Shelby County residents dealing with days’ worth of cleanup following powerful storms

SHELBY COUNTY, Ind. -- Active spring storms left behind trails of damage in Shelby County.

Homeowners were left picking up the pieces Monday, several hours after the destruction. They'll be cleaning up for many days to come.

Homeowners we spoke with say the strongest part of the storm only lasted about a minute, making them wonder if it really strong winds or something more.

Scott Richardson understands capturing video of the storm on his phone and posting it on social media wasn’t the smartest idea in the moment, but hours later he’s still in shock about what he captured.

“We’ve had some good ones, but not like that,” said Richardson. “I’m surprised the window didn’t blow out.”

Richardson says he ever experienced a storm quite like this before.

Richardson described the storm as “a lot of blowing, roaring, the water whipping across and coming up straight line and a lot of limbs breaking, hitting the north deck of the house.”

Winds reached speeds of 60 miles per hour or more at times on Sunday evening in Shelby County. Once daylight hit on Monday, Richardson found out he had a lot of clean up to do--120 acres of branches, tree limbs and storm debris.

As Richardson worked to clear out fallen trees, he wanted to know if the powerful winds were just that or a tornado. After the storm calmed down, he went to survey his neighborhood and found a tree that could have wiped out a house. Thankfully, it fell into open land.

“I’ve seen this big wall of something coming,” said Dave Williams.

Williams and his wife, Rita, don’t know where to begin with clean up. The two live right across the street from Richardson.

“I came out and looked out the front and my husband was still in the kitchen and I said, 'There’s a tree on your truck,'" explained Rita Williams. “He says, 'You got to be kidding me.' I said, 'I wouldn’t kid about something like that!'”

Just a few miles down the road, the wind ripped off the back part of a pole barn. The machinery inside kept it from collapsing completely.

“The wind was blowing, it seemed like 150 miles per hour,” said Williams, “I had to get back in the house because I was scared it was going to pick me up and blow me away.”

The director of emergency management in Shelby County says he’s waiting to hear back from the National Weather Service to determine whether straight-line winds or tornadoes were responsible for the damage.

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