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Powerful Winds Destroy Homes In Balt. City, County

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weather damage

It could have been a tornado or just strong winds, but whatever it was left a big mess.  There was an absolutely unbelievable sight from Sky Eye Chopper 13; you can see the wind lifted the roof off of an apartment building in northeast Baltimore and tossed it away.  The northeast part of town was hit hard.  The wind ripped a chimney off another home. 

The powerful winds also brought down power lines, keeping BGE crews very busy Wednesday.

Kelly McPherson has a good look at the damage.

The city has shut down the affected area and enacted a curfew.  No one can be in this neighborhood near the ripped apart apartments until Thursday morning.

Winds ripped apart hundreds of Baltimore homes.

“We got out just in time,” said Andrea Futrell.

Sixteen buildings at the Dutch Village and Mt. Pleasant apartments are condemned.  Roofs flew off and landed in a pile of rubble hundreds of feet away.

“Looked around and it looked like I was in a war zone and not my apartment,” said Michael Wilkens.  “Before I could brace myself for what I knew had to be disastrous, I was hit in the face with some sort of debris–a brick or a part of the ceiling.”

Thousands remain without power.

“The lights are out and everything.  Our food is still half-frozen,” said Willie Bannister.”

People who live in more than 350 units in the city cannot go home.  Many went to a shelter at the Friendship Academy.

“Until tomorrow when we can further see if we can go back to the apartment,” said Christopher Rather.

“Seeing the faces of others, the ones who have lost their homes, knowing that they have nothing to go home to…that is heartbreaking,” said Sherry Campbell.

The storm damaged their cars, too. 

Evacuees plan to assess their own damage on Thursday.

“A lot of sitting around, trying to figure out what’s next,” said Sherry Campbell.

The city will escort families home Thursday morning.

“It’s going to be a log process.  We think it’s going to take the entire day and maybe even the following day.  But we’re going to get it done,” said Reggie Scriber, City Housing Department.

Kai Jackson 
reports that people in Baltimore County were literally shaken out of bed overnight by a powerful storm.

Almost every single house in the neighborhood of Joppa Road and Dixon Avenue had at least some minor damage. It’s a mess in the Carney/Parkville area. But luckily no one got hurt when storm winds ripped through just after 1:30 a.m.

“It was extremely loud,” said Megan Morfe, Carney resident. “The whole house was just shaking.”

“My wife and I both sat up and looked at each other and said ‘you better get to the basement,'” said Greg Glinowiecki. “By the time we got to the basement it was basically over.”

The storm was fast and destructive. Winds ripped away sidings, tore off roofing shingles and downed dozens of fences.

The towering trees in the area faired the worse. Trees crashed down in the middle of roads, on top of cars and sheds– and in some cases even into houses.

One house was hit the hardest when 80 mph winds uprooted a giant tree that fell into the home. No one was in the house at the time, so neighbors were the ones who had to call 911.

All this destruction may be bad for homeowners, but it’s good business for tree trimmers who see dollar signs for every down limb.

“It’s just been crazy,” said Ben Allen, tree trimmer. “I’ve been running since around 4:30 this morning.”

BGE is busy too thanks to pulled power lines. And insurance adjusters are overwhelmed as well, getting pulled in different directions by homeowners who want to start their own cleanup as soon as possible.

“Yeah I’ll be doing some of that today, probably tomorrow,” Morfe said.

A lot of these homes still have a lot of debris in their yard. Good news for these folks is power has been restored. Many of them know they have a lot of work ahead of them in the days to come.

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