Thursday, January 31 2013, 09:06 AM CST
Storm Cleanup in Ashmore
ASHMORE-- The wind and rain were relentless as village cleanup crews and volunteers worked all through the night and into Wednesday trying to assess and limit the damage caused by the Tuesday night storms.
Kurt Crail, Mayor of Ashmore, says, "A lot of them are waiting for insurance, some of them have already started picking up and trying to clean up."
At one point, 770 residents were without power as Ameren crews worked to replace 49 telephone poles and downed power lines. Several businesses suffered damaged structures, but residences largely avoided any serious damage.
So far, the Mayor reports no injuries, "Mostly commercial, businesses, John Deere, Ashmore Estates, Grain silos over here, Frito Lay had some doors blown off. The rest of it's just minor stuff, some sheds, stuff like that, trees."
The John Deere dealer west of town experienced serious damage to two roofs. 3 steel silos lay crumpled after wind gusts blew them over and carried them 40 yards. Sump pumps no longer ran after the power went out; one church basement was filled with three inches of water.
While most houses avoided serious harm, the most significant damage occurred at Ashmore Estates, the nearly 100-year old house west of town. Re-roofed just a few years ago, the entire sheet-metal and wood roof was blown off.
Jessica Mertz is a friend of the owners, and is helping to clean up. "Right now we're in shock, we're not really sure what's going to happen next. It's a big effort to clean this up and we're just thankful for the community of friends."
Despite the damage, Mayor Crail was able to keep things in perspective, "We didn't have anybody hurt, which is a good thing."
Adam Rife reporting