Woman, infant hit by fallen tree branch at GR park

A large tree branch that fell on people at Riverside Park in Grand Rapids on Thursday, May 18, 2017. (Courtesy photo)


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A tree branch fell on a woman and her infant child at a Grand Rapids park Thursday.

A large limb from an old growth Silver Maple tree fell on a group of mothers and children around 10:20 a.m. at Riverside Park, trapping a mother and her infant.

At the same time, West Michigan Tree Services was at the park filming a segment with a Swedish film crew when they heard the crash of the tree branch and the screams of the mothers and children.

Vic Foerster, an arborist with the company, said he and his crew rushed over with their tools to help free the woman and infant.

Foerster said the woman had a laceration on her head, bumps and bruises and complained of back pain. She and the infant were taken by ambulance to the hospital for treatment and evaluation.

“There was a big gust of wind and then we heard a large crack, looked over and the limb was laying on the walkway,” he said. “We heard the yells and the shouts and screams. We went over there and there was one woman with her child under the branches.”

Thursday, the National Weather Service issued a Wind Advisory for much of West Michigan, including Kent County. Storm Team 8 meteorologists say wind gusts could reach 35 mph to 45 mph with winds peaking from late morning through the afternoon.