Written by PETER KUEBECK Sentinel Staff Writer
Tuesday, 19 November 2013 11:14
As many as 1,500 residents remained without power this morning as Wood County continues to pick up the pieces following two tornadoes that touched down on Sunday.
|Damage to VPD Inc.’s building in the Cedar Business Park off of St. Rt. 795 in Perrysburg Township. (Photo: J.D. Pooley/Sentinel-Tribune)
The National Weather Service confirmed that two tornadoes – one in Perrysburg Township, and the other at Jerry City – wreaked havoc, causing damage to homes and businesses and causing injuries.
The Perrysburg Township tornado reportedly formed near Lime City Road and U.S. 20 around 5:35 p.m. and reached EF-2 strength with wind speeds of 120 to 125 miles per hour near Oregon Road and Ohio 795, where a the canopy of a Circle K gas station collapsed.
The tornado continued northeast and decreased in power until it reached Oregon in Lucas County, where it again reached EF-2 strength and destroyed several homes.
The NWS indicates that the tornado reached a maximum width of 150 to 200 yards, and traveled approximately 12 miles.
The second tornado formed at 5:35 p.m. on the east side of Jerry City near Main Street and Huffman Road, and lifted about one mile east along Jerry City Road. That tornado, which was 75 to 100 yards wide, was classified as an EF-1 and reached wind speeds between 105 and 100 miles per hour.
A home in Jerry City partially collapsed in the incident, sending multiple occupants to Wood County Hospital for treatment.
Northern Wood County bore the brunt of the storm. As many as 1,500 customers were reportedly without power along Avenue Road, east of Oregon Road, this morning, and as many as 150 were without power around Walbridge.
Electricity in that area was expected to be restored by midnight tonight.
As many as 100 customers remained without power in Perrysburg itself this morning, with a similar number out near Ohio 199 and Roachton Road. About 20 remained without power in Rossford. Areas nearer Perrysburg were expected to have power back by mid-afternoon.
“You know, the damage at 795 and Oregon was really bad over there,” said Perrysburg Township Deputy Chief Mike Gilmore this morning.
“But we were very fortunate because there were a lot of residents over there and a trailer park is over there at Friendly Village. We did have quite a few houses damaged in the Starbright area, but it was like a miracle, we didn’t have any major injuries. It was very fortunate.”
A number of businesses were also damaged in the Cedar Park business park, he said, including VPD, Precision Strip, and Omni Care. Promedica St. Luke’s Hospital Physical Therapy, located across the road from the Circle K, additionally received damage, Gilmore said.
Other damage in the area included homes in the Argyle Forest subdivision and Wood Lake Trailer Court in Lake Township, as well as Owens Lake Commons, an apartment complex largely occupied by Owens Community College students.
“All the emergency services pitched in very good,” said Gilmore. “People are resilient and even the next day, everyone was out, cutting trees and moving things and it was going pretty well. It’s still going to take a long time but it’s going well.”
Brad Gilbert, Wood County emergency management director, characterized today as a “get organized, get things cleaned up day,” and indicated that he was to meet with officials from Jerry City, Bloom Township and Portage Township this morning to determine the direction of the cleanup. Perrysburg and Lake Township cleanups, he said, have been ongoing “since practically right after the storm.”
A Red Cross shelter has been set up at Cedar Creek Church on Lime City Road. Red Cross Northwest Ohio spokesperson Amanda Aldrich said this morning that prior to the shelter being erected, a total of 50 people – 25 adults and 25 children – were helped. At least eight families stayed at the shelter overnight, she said, “but I know that number’s higher.”
More accurate figures were expected later this morning.
“I know they had people show up to the shelter last night, which is kind of the first time that happened in many, many years,” Gilbert said.
He said that an estimate of the damage wrought by the storm would be difficult to calculate due to the number of commercial buildings involved.
“I think that’s going to take them a while to get things assessed.”
He said that with current forecasts predicting colder temperatures and upcoming wintry precipitation, “we’re fighting getting things done before the weekend, because of the change in weather.”
Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 November 2013 11:58