Strong winds blew into Niagara County on Sunday night and continued throughout Monday, causing scattered downed limbs and other problems.

In Royalton, a large tree limb fell onto a house at 8427 Bunker Hill Road early Monday.

Christine Stapleson told the US&J that she was sleeping on her couch when the tree hit around 1:30 a.m.

“I thought a car hit the house,” she recalled.

Stapleson looked out the windon but couldn’t see anything; the branches had all landed on the east side of her home and she was in a room on the west side.

Upstairs, her son Michael Bannach, 18, had been sleeping in a bedroom on the other side of the structure.

“I called up to him and he didn’t respond for about 10 minutes,” Stapleson said. “He came down about 10 mintues later and his eyes were like saucers.”

The tree’s impact had flung a door open in his bedroom and knocked several items off shelves.

“He told me, ‘I think we have a spirit in the house,’ “ Stapleson said.

Finally they opened the door to the enclosed front porch where they were greeted by tree branches.

Stapleson’s sister Brenda owns the house through her Brockport-based Stapleson Homes. She had an insurance agent at the house Monday afternoon to assess the damage.

In the Town of Lockport, a gust of wind lifted and blew a large tent that had been in the parking lot of Mike Smith Buick. The only thing that stopped the tent from landing in the interseciton of Transit and Robinson Roads was a large metal street light pole.

The wind kicked up late Sunday, bringing in cooler temperatures after a warm October day that saw the thermometer reach 75 degrees at the Buffalo airport.

Today’s high was 66 degrees, at 2:59 a.m. and the thermometer continued to drop through the day.

A weather spotter in Olcott reported to the National Weather Service a 45 mph gust at 4:20 a.m. Monday. A 51 mph gust was recorded at the Niagara Falls International Airport at 4 a.m. Monday.

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