storm damage immediately
leaves lots of damage
Wanda English Burnett
T Tornado, high winds, wind shear, thunderstorm - whatever the
National Weather Service decides to call it, the storm that took
a cut through Ripley County Monday night left debris and damage
wherever it touched.
According to Ripley County Emergency Management Director Wayne
Peace, the weather service has determined that a small tornado
- a FO - the lowest on the scale, did touch down somewhere between
Milan and Sunman.
The storm came from the west, took a northbound path through Holton
and continued in that pattern leaving homes and structures destroyed
along a path that included Osgood, Napoleon, Milan and Sunman.
Destruction was seen at Holton on County Road 950 where a tree
went into a home. A barn was completely destroyed in that area
On Michigan Road near US 50, Jamie and Tracy Bradley lost their
barn as the wind literally blew the concrete blocks apart and
the roof into trees across the road. I got the kids in the
basement, noted Tracy, when she knew the storm was upon
them, but was still concerned because her husband wasnt
home yet. Jamie had stopped at Dabney, less than a mile from his
home, to ride out the storm.
The Bradleys were glad to have escaped with their lives. The only
semi-casualty was a cat that was stuck under a piece of equipment,
that had been picked up by the wind and put down on the cats
paw. The chickens and rabbits, recently purchased for fair projects,
were safe inside their pens in the barn.
Peace noted he stopped by the Bradleys and also noticed a propane
tank lying on its side. That was reported immediately and taken
At Osgood, the Richardsons sustained heavy damage to a home on
202 E. Franklin Street when a huge tree twisted at the right height
to smash into their roof sending branches sprawling across the
roof. The only room that was safe was the bathroom,
a family member told The Versailles Republican. That was
the room the person living there had taken refuge in with his
black lab. Both were safe.
There were many other reports of damage throughout the county
with houses damaged, barns destroyed and trees down. Power outages
added to the situation as Southeastern Indiana REMC and Duke Energy
have worked around the clock to restore power.
Peace noted his power was off about 24 hours after the storm hit
The county highway department employees have been busy clearing
roads working hard to make sure all the roads are passable for
motorists. Sheriffs deputies have also had an extra load
along with dispatchers who get numerous calls for help when these
types of storms occur. Firefighters, along with weather spotters
have kept busy as they report to their stations to assist others.
Peace urges citizens to report all damage to the following website:
http://www.in.gov/dhs/2797.htm. He noted that it is best to go
ahead and give an estimate to the best of your ability on what
you think the damage is. Its okay if its not
exact, he told The Versailles Republican. He will
meet with officials from Indiana Homeland Security on Friday to
tally the destruction for the county. This is how it is determined
if the county will qualify for any help from the federal government.
Residents are asked to go online to the IDHS website at: http://www.in.gov/dhs/2797.htm.
If you do not have access to a computer, go to your nearest library
and use their public computers. Peace stressed the importance
of reporting damage after storms such as this one and the flooding
on April 18. Do not wait to report. Do it today, urged
This storm has come and gone and left people picking up the pieces.
While no injuries to individuals have been reported, there are
more storms on the horizon.
Indiana State Police Sgt. Noel Houze says, The spring of
2011 has been challenging to say the least. He pointed out
the storms that have swept the nation and offers some safety tips
to help citizens survive severe weather events:
Purchase a NOAA weather radio. These radios will warn you
of approaching severe weather. This can be especially important
during the overnight hours when you may be asleep.
In your home. Go to the basement if you have one. If you
do not have a basement, seek shelter in an interior room in your
home away from windows such as a closet or a bathroom. Cover yourself
with blankets or heavy coats to protect you against flying debris.
At school or in other public buildings. Seek shelter in
an interior hallway or under a stairwell on the lowest level of
the building. Avoid areas that have windows or wide span roofs.
Sit in a crouched position and cover your head to protect yourself
from flying debris. Follow the instructions of employees or staff
In a car or mobile home. LEAVE IMMEDIATELY! Very little
protection is offered in either a car or mobile home. Seek shelter
in a more substantial or permanent structure. If there is no other
structure nearby, seek protection in a ditch or other low lying
area away from trees and power lines if possible. Lie flat and
cover your head.
In addition to these tips, the Indiana State Police advise residents
to have a home emergency plan with your family. Also, prepare
an emergency kit which includes documents such as a mortgage,
insurance policies, birth certificates, social security cards,
etc. if they are not already secured in a safety deposit box at
You should also have a kit with first aid supplies and extra medication
such as insulin or blood pressure medications.
While the storm that came through Ripley County was a narrow band
according to authorities, it caused a lot of destruction to those
affected by it.
Peace advises residents to be aware of impending storms, take
cover, and report damage afterwards.
ENGLISH BURNETT PHOTOS
Pictured above a huge tree fell directly on the roof of
the Richardson home in Osgood, leaving it unlivable. Residents
were trying to get out important items to them as the roof
creaked on Tuesday morning. Pictured to the left, a barn
at the resident of Jamie and Tracy Bradley was completely
blown apart by the storm that ravaged the area on Monday
night. The tin from the roof was thrown along their fence
row and into the trees across the street.