Cleanup efforts begin after 5 tornadoes sweep through area - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Cleanup efforts begin after five tornadoes sweep through Thursday morning

Colleen Ashbaugh's house in Henry County Colleen Ashbaugh's house in Henry County
From Hamler area in Wood County. Viewer photo. From Hamler area in Wood County. Viewer photo.
(Toledo News Now) -

Damage assessment and cleanup began Thursday after a major storm system passed over northwest Ohio late Wednesday into early Thursday morning.

Heavy rain and very strong winds were common, but several areas of storm rotation were spotted, and the National Weather Service has reported four small tornadoes in Henry County and one in Wood County.

Multiple counties across northwest Ohio were issued tornado warnings, and several areas were also placed under flash flood warnings.

Only one minor injury was reported: A woman in North Creek, Putnam County, was injured when the winds overturned her mobile home.

The National Weather Service's damage survey indicated the brief tornadoes amid "downburst clusters." In Henry County, these were an EF0, with wind speed estimated at 85 miles per hour, one mile north of Hamler, an EF1 with wind speed of 95 miles per hour, 2.3 miles southeast of Malinta, an EF0 with wind speed of 80 miles per hour, 2.7 miles southeast of Malinta, and another EF0 with wind speed of 80 miles per hour, three miles east-southeast of New Bavaria.

The EMA director in Henry County said winds reached 100 miles per hour. The southern part of the county received the most damage, but no injuries were reported.

The winds tore wood and aluminum off a barn just south of Malinta, sending the debris crashing into Colleen Ashbaugh's home.

"All of a sudden, you hear this ‘whoosh,' and stuff started flying," Ashbaugh said.

Trees and power lines were blown down all over the county; some even blocked part of County Road 2. Ashbaugh said she's grateful things were not worse.

"Thank God we're alive," she said. "We'll be okay."

An EF0 tornado was confirmed in Wood County, one mile west of Custar. The maximum wind speed was 80 miles per hour.

Near the communities of Weston and Custar, strong winds toppled a barn and brought several trees down.

Tom Zulch says debris from his barn was carried almost half a mile away.

"The barn is a total loss," Zulch said. "And some of the machinery is damaged inside. I had one brood cow that got hit by a piece of metal that's going to have to be put down."

Custar residents lost power, and debris from fallen trees covered streets and lawns. Some residents are working on cleaning up, saying they would rather do that than sit inside and wait.

"It's going great," said Janet Cavanaugh. "We've got a lot done. A lot go to yet, but it's going well."

As they work to return to normalcy, residents are happy no lives were lost.

"We're fortunate, very fortunate, absolutely," Cavanaugh said. "We just got some spring cleaning – again."

In Bowling Green, one family had a tree fall onto their house, causing serious damage to the roof.

Click here for reports of storm damage from the Storm Prediction Center.



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