It’s been more than three weeks since the storms ripped through south central Indiana and several businesses are still rebuilding.
A 50 year-old Monroe county business is among those which suffered extensive damage from the EF1 tornado that touched down about three weeks ago. Cary Dillman, President of Dillman Farm, says several buildings on the property lost their roofs. “It’s going to be about seven weeks before the roof is completed,” he said.
State Farm Agent Lisa Allen says that in 25 years in the insurance business, she hasn’t seen such devastation. “This is the worst catastrophe we’ve had that’s been declared here in Bloomington,” Allen said.
Dillman said the wind was strong enough to pick up a 12,000 pound boiler and shove it about five feet. “Our business alone we’re up over one million dollars in damage,” Dillman said. His parent’s house which is adjacent to the farm suffers more than $300,000 worth in damage.
Allen said between May 22 and 26 her agency took more than 3,800 home claims, with the majority in Bloomington. Some are still being processed.
“Thus far we’ve paid out about $800,000 and we’ve taken 2,800 auto claims,” Allen said. She also said nationwide State Farm has paid out $916 million to recoup storm damage costs in April and May. “I know we’ve paid out about $1.9 million already, and across the nation we’ve just been devastated with storms,” she said.
“The April and May storms together are State Farm’s 7th largest catastrophe for homes in its 90 year history,” Allen said.
Dillman estimates it could take about three months before cleanup is complete and the jams and jellies the farm produces are again sent to market.