Rob Malcolm


FAIRFIELD (CBS13) — Wild wind at Fairfield’s Allan Witt Park seemingly came out of nowhere Tuesday afternoon. Courtney Vann, a sixth-grade teacher, was coaching softball when the weather suddenly changed.

“Actually all the girls had taken off their sweatshirts at practice and it immediately got cold,” Vann said. “When the clouds covered the sun and it was pretty chilly and then that’s when that happened.”

Anthony James was riding his BMX at the same time and ran for cover with his friends.

“We had heard it in the back of the skate park and saw some dust just spinning around,“ James said.

The carnage was captured on the park’s closed-circuit cameras, showing the moments the wind tore the roof off a park building and sent debris, metal, and dust spinning in the air. It lasted anywhere from 10 to 20 seconds but moved quickly, said James.

“It started coming super fast and started throwing skateboards in the air and stuff like that,” James said.

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No one was hurt, but park regulars like Lorenzo Patton said it’s the strangest thing he’s seen in years.

“At first I saw people running and I thought, ‘Man, it’s not so bad,’” said Patton. “Then I seen a skateboard flying in the air then I was like okay this is kind of serious.”

The National Weather Service says parkgoers were caught in a Dust Devil. They can appear when conditions are clear dry and hot. Tuesday afternoon was perfect for the phenomenon but not for skating.

James says he was lucky to get out of the way.

“I probably should have been more careful cause I almost got hit a couple of times,” James said.

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