No Injuries From Storm; Lengthy Cleanup Underway

Cleanup has begun from Monday evening’s severe weather which left scores of trees uprooted and some people displaced from their homes because of the damage.

Chainsaws ripped through the remnants of downed trees across Monroe County Tuesday, many of which had damaged everything from sidewalks to single-family homes to apartment buildings the night before.  Cranes and tree crews were brought in from outside the county to help haul away the wreckage.  Sam Cramer with Martinsville’s Cramer Tree Company, was helping to remove a tree from an apartment complex on Bloomington’s near south side and says the damage is bad, but not the worst he’s seen.

“We got all of the weight off the top [of the building]. We’re trying to keep it from going on through,” Cramer said. “About half of the roof’s gone… that whole corner of the house is gone, it’s destroyed.”

Falling trees knocked down light standards, crashed through the roofs of some businesses, tore the roofs off of others and even sent branches through the window of a squad car at Bloomington’s police headquarters.  Still, BPD Captain Joe Qualters says he’s heard no reports of serious injury, despite a large number of reports of damage.

“Last evening we were kept very busy with a high volume of phone calls. In fact we received over 300 phone calls in the hour during the storm. I’m told by our dispatch coordinator that we essentially did one-third of a day’s work in a two-hour time period, by answering all of those calls within that aforementioned one-hour time period.”

Bloomington officials say the city’s downtown was the area hardest-hit by the storm.  Duke Energy says it could take until Wednesday night until power is fully restored to Monroe County homes.

Stan Jastrzebski

WFIU/WTIU News Senior Editor Stan Jastrzebski spent time as a reporter with WGN Radio in Chicago and as an editor at Network Indiana, an Indianapolis news service. Stan is the winner of awards from the Associated Press, the RTDNA, the Indiana Broadcasters Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. He hosts WFIU's Ask the Mayor and anchors WTIU's InFocus.

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