'It's an Invasion' of the Tumbleweeds

Communities in California, Utah were overwhelmed Monday
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2018 11:15 AM CDT
A member of the Victorville public works team clears tumbleweeds from homes in Victorville, Calif., on Monday.   (James Quigg/The Daily Press via AP)

(Newser) – "It's an invasion." That's how residents of one Victorville, Calif., neighborhood are summing up a sudden assault from tumbleweeds, thousands of which piled up there on Monday. Tumbleweeds are a common sight in the area, located an hour outside of Los Angeles; wind gusts carry the prickly bundles across open fields, per the Washington Post. But "normally you get a few flying down the street," a resident tells KABC. "It's never been this bad." With 100 to 150 homes affected, some residents actually called 911, a city spokeswoman tells the Daily Press. A woman adds a neighbor was trapped in his home for two hours as city crews attempted to clear a path through tumbleweeds, as wind gusts in the region hit 70mph.

Residents two states over were having the same problem. After strong winds Monday, tumbleweeds made at least a few homes in West Jordan, Utah, impossible to access, reports Fox 13, noting a video showed workers battling an 8-foot high mound in front of one. "It was probably 10 weeds deep before they could get to the front door," a witness tells KSL, adding it took crews at least 1.5 hours to clear out what he estimates were 3,000 tumbleweeds. The city's parks director says the haul, later pulverized, weighed as much as 2 tons. Elsewhere in town, tumbleweeds were less of a nuisance but still took over yards and driveways. "We just invest in a good pitchfork and gloves," says one resident of the situation. (Aussies can commiserate.)

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