Carmel residents assess damage after storm causes fires, downed trees


Carmel residents are assessing the damage after a powerful thunderstorm quickly tore through the area the afternoon of May 16.

The Carmel Fire Dept. received more than 70 calls between 5 and 11 p.m., with additional storm-related calls continuing into May 17 as power came back on in several areas and activated home alarms.

“The heart of that storm really ran through Carmel,” said Tim Griffin, a CFD spokesperson.

CFD responded to multiple fires, car accidents and reports of trees falling on occupied homes and cars. Fire departments from several surrounding areas helped CFD handle the call volume. Many homes and businesses lost power, and in some areas it wasn’t restored as of May 17.

The storm led to a fire on the roof of the four-story Monon Flats apartment building under construction in Carmel’s Midtown area.

“The crews did a phenomenal job,” Griffin said. “The guys implemented (their) training and really did a good job because that could’ve been a devastating fire.”

CFD also responded to a house fire after 3 a.m. May 17 in the 11000 block of Jordan Road. The vacant home was fully engulfed by the time firefighters reached it.

Griffin said he is not aware of anyone in Carmel suffering injuries as result of the storm.

“It’s fortunate,” he said. “People were staying inside doing what they needed to do (to stay safe).”

WISH-TV meteorologist Randy Ollis said the line of storms included 60 to 70 mile per hour straightline winds strong enough to take down large trees.

“Part of the reason the trees came down is the ground was saturated,” he said.

Ollis said the storm hit Hamilton County and northwestern Marion County the hardest. No tornados were reported.

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