Roof blows off LOFS house, vehicles overturn during storm

2013-06-12T23:00:00Z 2013-12-28T08:24:05Z Roof blows off LOFS house, vehicles overturn during stormTimes Staff nwitimes.com
June 12, 2013 11:00 pm  • 

Heavy thunderstorms left tens of thousands without power, blew a roof off a home, downed power lines and overturned vehicles throughout the region Wednesday night.

The National Weather Service had a flash flood warning for southern Lake County and northern Newton County until 2:30 a.m. About 2 to 3 inches of rain had fallen across Chicago by 8:30 p.m. There were no rainfall totals available for Indiana.

A severe thunderstorm warning and a severe weather outlook were issued for the area until 1 a.m. Thursday. The National Weather Service warned residents in Lake and Porter counties of large hail and damaging winds.

Fire Chief Graham Federico, of Lakes of the Four Seasons Volunteer Fire Force, said a roof flew off a house in the 1100 block of Sunnyslope Drive. The homeowners were not injured.

Federico said about a quarter mile of 109th Avenue west of the entrance of the Lakes of the Four Seasons was blocked off because of knocked down trees. He anticipated the area being closed until Thursday morning. 

Patti Van Til, a spokeswoman for the Lake County Sheriff's Department, said there were trees and power lines down across the county.

There were 31,745 residents in Northwest Indiana without power as of 11:00 p.m., according to the NIPSCO website. The areas most heavily impacted were St. John and Schererville. Crown Point, Merrillville, Gary, Hobart and Valparaiso also were affected.

Earlier in the night NIPSCO reported 35,000 customers had lost power.

The Merrillville Fire Department said there were multiple reports of trees and power lines down as of 7:30 p.m. There also was a report of storm damage to a building under construction near Georgia Street and 95th Avenue. There were no reported injuries.

Indiana State Police responded to two separate overturned vehicles on Interstate 65. The first incident involved a semi near mile marker 240. The second overturned vehicle was near mile marker 253.

Police said both involved minor injuries. Motorists should expect traffic delays because of the crashes.

About 6 p.m., a fire was reported at a house on Wayne Street in Lake Station. The Lake Station Fire Department said there were no reported injuries. It was unclear if the fire was weather-related.

Hammond Fire Department officials said they had not received any reports of storm damage as of 7:45 p.m.

The North Township trustee in Hammond has created a website, https://northtownship.recovers.org/, in anticipation of possible storm damage.

In LaPorte County, WSBT television station was reporting heavy wind, rain and rotations forming.

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