BROOKSTON, Ind. (WLFI) — State Road 43 and State Road 18 are closed in Brookston due to storm damage, downed power lines and a gas leak.
Officials are asking drivers to find alternative routes and avoid the area if possible.
“First I saw the lightning show, it was fantastic,” resident Brent Rogers said. “After a couple minutes, the power went out and it got ugly. You started hearing the cracking, the limbs going down, the trees falling down.”
Severe storms tore through the small town Thursday morning. They left behind extensive damage — the worst Troy Yeoman has ever seen in his role as town marshal.
“It came fast, very hard, a lot of damage in town. Trees are down, power lines. Some cars are damaged, houses are damaged,” Yeoman said.
While he was assessing the damage at his home, Rogers couldn’t help but wonder why the sirens never went off.
“Every Monday morning, we have a siren practice and drill, like normal. But this time, it did not go off,” Rogers said.
Yeoman said the sirens didn’t go off because the power went out.
“I had radio’s to White County dispatch to have them sound the alarm, sound the siren,” Yeoman said. “Before that could happen, the power went dead, so the siren never did activate. But it was requested to activate. I did what I could, driving around town with my lights and sirens on.”
Yeoman suggests residents find somewhere to go and stay. He says the power could be out for a few days.
White County EMA is working with the Red Cross to set up a shelter at Frontier Elementary School.
Crews will be working on the gas leak near 8th Street anywhere from noon until 5 p.m. Thursday.