More than 50 tornadoes ripped across Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky, leaving at least six dead and about 69,000 without power, according to Duke Energy.
Twelve Indiana counties reported serious damage from storms or tornadoes Sunday, and at least three people were injured across the state as a destructive storm cell moved across the Midwest.
Kokomo appeared to be one of the hardest hit areas in the state. Heavy damage was reported to many buildings, including at Kokomo Town Center mall and Louie‘s Coney Island restaurant, where wind and water caused the roof to cave in.
Authorities in Howard County have asked residents to stay off the roads until the state of emergency is lifted at 6 a.m. Monday.
The Tippecanoe School Corporation has canceled Monday classes.
A tornado cut a line through the southern portion of Lebanon, beginning with a Starbucks just off I-65 on the city‘s west side. Police said 26 homes were damaged by the storm. On I-65 North, heavy winds tossed a semi-truck onto the interstate from a nearby parking lot and damaged the Subaru-Isuzu plant.
Plant officials said all of their employees were accounted for, and none were hurt. In Indianapolis, heavy winds and rain damaged trees and caused flooding in downtown roadways. And, on the city‘s east side, a historic Irvington building collapsed under the force of the storm.
In southern Illinois, an elderly man and his sister were killed when a tornado hit their home about noon in the rural community of New Minden, Coroner Mark Styninger said. A third person died in Washington, in the central part of the state, which was one of the hardest-hit areas. Two others perished in Massac County in the far southern part of the state, near Paducah, Ky., said Patti Thompson of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. She did not provide details.
Much of the WSLM listening area was under a wind advisory all day as well as Tornado watches and warnings as well as Severe Thunderstorm warnings.
One group of tornadoes developed west of Bedford and moved east through Jackson and Jennings Counties. That storm brought damaged to Washington, In. Classes are cancelled today in the Washington, Washington Catholic, and Barr Reeve School Systems as the debris is cleaned up.
One vacant home was knocked off its foundation and thrown several feet. Numerous homes were damaged or destroyed, along with trees and vehicles.
Among the businesses damaged were Crackers and Reeds Deli on West National Highway, Etiennes Farm Market on the Highway 50 by-pass at Maysville Road, and GPC. A number of businesses have delayed their openings this morning.
The Indiana State Police issued a curfew for residents.The curfew began Sunday and runs until dusk today.
The curfew means that there are to be no citizens walking about throughout the city limits, nor should there be any driving on city roadways unless in the case of an emergency.
Mayor Joe Wellman says the storm hit Ettienne’s Farm Market, damaged homes around Cindy Kay Drive, hit the shopping center on the west side, WAMW, and Reid’s Deli, then down along Sycamore before stopping close to Meridian Street.
City Fire Chief David Rhoads said six homes in total were completely destroyed by the tornado.
While numerous homes and buildings were damaged, there were no reports of serious injuries.
City crews hit the streets with heavy equipment to remove debris and to restore power.
City crews and residents tried to bring things back together in the damaged areas, bringing in heavy equipment and trucks. “We got every crew we could out and working as quickly as we could,” said Evans.
A second group of storms extended from Bloomington south past Vincennes. That system was predicted to bring Hurricane-force winds at more than 70mph.
Bloomington was under a tornado warning as the IU Men’s basketball team was preparing to play at 5p. The crowd at Assembly Hall was down and the game played as scheduled after storms moved through the area.
At one time a spinning air mass was spotted by radar over Little York, but that moved on into Scott County and towards Austin.
No damage has been reported in Washington County.