LIMA, N.Y. (WROC) — Lima resident John Malachowsky said that at about 4:30 p.m. Thursday, it sounded like a freight train blasted through the area. 

“We got a willow tree, we lost a couple of branches, we have some trees in the front of the house — that took down enough that it blocked the road from traffic, blocked my driveway in,” Malachowsky said.

Besides some mild damage to the house, he says that’s about it. Thankfully, no one was hurt. 

A severe thunderstorm knocked out power for thousands in the Greater Rochester area Thursday, with powerful winds whipping through, and a tornado watch across the region.

“I heard something like drop, I was like ‘what just fell over?’… I guess it was the tree,” said Esther Slocumb looking at a massive downed tree on her family’s lawn in Livonia.

Her brother Jacob Slocumb says no one was hurt here, either. But the clean-up duty is immense. 

“It just seemed to come through like a tornado and just whip right through tore down all the branches,” said Jacob.

The power in Livonia and over in the Town of Richmond was knocked out with lines littering the roadways. For Margaret Cooper in Canandaigua, their power was also offline.

“My husband’s getting the generator ready to go because it looks like we’re not going to have electricity for a day or two at least,” Cooper said.

But, there’s a brighter side to all this according to Malachowsky back in Lima. He says thanks to the kind community here and church friends, he’s not cleaning all this up alone. 

“And that’s the silver lining to this terrible cloud is how much the neighbors and people I don’t even know stopped and helped get stuff out of the street,” he said.

Other regions were met with golf-ball-size hail. Parts of Victor and Farmington dealt with a 30-minute period of rain and hail.

As of Friday morning, there are still hundreds of residents in the Greater Rochester area without power. One casualty of the widespread outage was Geneseo Central, which was forced to close classrooms Friday and send students to Livonia for Regents Examination.