Thunderstorms cause damage throughout the Rochester area

Posted at: 07/03/2013 6:55 PM
Updated at: 07/04/2013 12:21 PM
By: Lynette Adams

Thunderstorms, lightning, and showers popped up across Rochester on Wednesday. The storms caused localized flooding and knocked down trees in some areas, including at Oak Hill Country Club in Pittsford.

The course is being prepared to host of of the majors of the PGA. Now, with trees down and heavy flooding on the green, there is a lot of work to do before the tournament. The golf course will be closed tomorrow for repairs. The clubhouse will still be open for the Fourth of July celebration.

People in Perinton tell us they think the storm may have been a tornado.

Jennifer Masciangelo and her children were swimming at her mother's house on Grandview Drive in Perinton when the sky became dark. Masciangelo says they got out of the pool and went inside. Within minutes, something happened she says she's never seen.

"The trees were sideways. It was raining so hard you couldn't see anything. It was just loud. Lots of wind, rain and thunder. We looked out and this is what happened."

Other residents were stunned as well. They weren't sure what to call the storm.

"I saw wind that came up instantly," said Lou Bechle. "It was probably going 90 to 100 miles an hour. I don't know if it was a tornado or a microbust."

Bechle and two others had been working in his backyard when they decided to go into the garage. Bechle says it was fortuitous.

"If we had been standing outside, we would probably be down the street 500 yards."

What was even more amazing: just a mile away at the Illingworth's house, a storm, but no damage.

Jody Illingworth is Masciangelo's sister-in-law.

"It was a bad thunderstorm, but it was nothing comparable to when I got the phone call from my mom and she said, 'You need to come over here. There's trees down everywhere. I'm terrified.'" Illingworth continues, "We got in the car and on the way over we saw the destruction increasingly. Huge amounts of trees down everywhere."

Luckily, there are no reports of injuries.

As for Oak Hill, officials say the course will be ready for the PGA Championship, which runs August 5th through August 11th.