Monday, May 7, 2012 | 9 p.m.
North Las Vegas was slammed by wind gusts from 35 to 40 mph Monday, which knocked down an air conditioning unit, cracked a tree in half and caused damage to several businesses.
The National Weather Service has received reports of strong winds in the area, but has not been able to measure any neighborhood gusts.
North Las Vegas resident Jim Bacon said the gusts felt as high as 80 mph around 4:40 p.m. near Cheyenne Avenue and Valley Drive.
“It was a very, very strong blast,” Bacon said. “It just hit and was gone.”
Gusts of over 40 mph could have been due to a microburst and dust devils, which are tiny twisters, said Jim Harrison, meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
Bacon said the strong wind broke a tree in his backyard and ripped a swamp cooler off a neighbor’s house.
The windows of Bacon’s home were open during the afternoon, letting the day’s normal breezes cool his home. The strong gusts that lasted about five seconds ripped through the screens on his window and forced a living room sofa to move about a foot.
“It just seems freaky,” Bacon said.
Las Vegas Fire and Rescue also responded to a report of wind damage to a business at 1520 N. Eastern Avenue. No injuries were reported during the incident, fire officials said.
Winds are expected to die down Monday night, Harrison said.