11:43am

Sat March 3, 2012
The Commonwealth

Southern Indiana Devastated by Tornadoes

Residents in Kentucky and southern Indiana are cleaning up after dozens of tornadoes touched down yesterday. Homes were demolished, and more than 20 people were killed. Some of the worst damage was in Clark County. In Marysville, the town’s post office and hardware store are still standing—but that’s about it. Only 10 miles away in Henryville, the combined elementary, junior and senior high school was demolished. Besides Clark County, Scott and Washington counties were also hit.

Indiana State Police Sergeant Jerry Goodin says the job is unimaginably huge—in all, there’s a three county area of destruction, with hundreds of miles of rural county roads.

“So what we’re having to do is that we’re literally having to go down county roads and we’re checking homes as we go down,” he said. “After a home is searched and everyone is out of it and we seem to be okay, then we’re putting a check mark on that home so people will know.”

Goodin says he’s never seen this type of mass destruction.

“The worst case scenario happened for us,” he said. “We had multiple tornadoes and it happened all of a sudden. And like I said, we knew there was a possibility that something like this would happen and we were trying to prepare. But there’s no way you can prepare for something like this happening.”

Since the storms hit, the towns have been flooded with volunteers—people hoping to help. Goodin says nearby residents should stay clear of damaged areas until they hear otherwise, so they don’t risk hampering rescue efforts.