People warned to stay out of New York City parks due to falling trees, branches

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York City officials are urging people to stay out of parks Friday, after Thursday's snow brought down branches and trees across the Tri-State Area.

It is a warning best heeded by everyone, even outside the city, amid the danger of already weakened trees and branches toppling over.

The threat is heightened because many trees still have their leaves, which acted as catch basins for the heavy, wet snow that fell throughout the day. Normally, these leaves are gone by the time major snowfall occurs, lessening the danger of limbs snapping.

Hundreds of trees and branches fell in Manhattan alone, with dozens of others leaning over sidewalks and streets.

A huge tree came crashing down on East 73rd Street - and now it is a waiting game for Bill Goodman, after the tree fell on his Porsche.

"They've gotta come and cut the tree and then we can tow the car, and see where it goes from there," he said.

Goodman is not the only one with storm damage.

On the Upper West Side, side streets were also a mess, and so were parts of Columbus Avenue.

In fact, a tree branch nearly hit our own Eyewitness News 7 On Your Side Reporter Nina Pineda on the Upper West Side Thursday.

New York City Parks Department workers are canvassing the parks Friday, looking for at-risk trees and branches.

"We all know New York City parks can be gorgeous in this inclement weather, but the heavy snow and ice combo from last night makes weaker trees extremely dangerous," a mayoral spokesperson said. "We are asking everyone to please stay out of the parks today."

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