People are still cleaning up after a tornado in Middle Inlet
The National Weather Service confirmed three more tornadoes from last week’s storm
MIDDLE INLET, Wis. (WBAY) - The National Weather Service has confirmed that a tornado did in fact touch down in Middle Inlet in Marinette County during last Wednesday’s severe weather, bringing the total to 8 tornadoes in Northeast Wisconsin and 11 statewide.
It’s been a week since the tornado touched down, but people in Middle Inlet are still trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces. The tornado left a lot of damage to a lot of property. Four barns on one road alone were devastated by the storm.
“The first night, a lot of our roads were impassable,” Town Chair Ron Wenzel said.
“There’s just a tremendous amount of trees down in yards, on roads, in county forest land, private property,” Marinette County Emergency Management Coordinator Kathy Frank added.
The fire department opened its doors to everyone in need and helped on local farms.
“We opened up our fire station to anybody needing a shower, bathrooms, charge their phones,” Fire Chief Jon Kleuskens said, “and used our trucks to get water to any livestock or animals that needed it.”
People were without power until last weekend.
“I would say dozens, dozens of houses, a lot of places they’re not even discovered yet because they’re so far, far back in the woods and a lot of these people are out of town. So when they do come up and check out their cabins, houses, whatever, they’re going to be in shock,” Wenzel said.
Still, the fire chief told us the town has really come a long way.
“We were making headway, and we just have such good volunteers on the department that -- and the community -- that just really went out and, and did a lot of work and selflessly did a lot of work for everybody,” Kleuskens said.
Emergency Management says across the county most communities are making good progress and getting back on their feet.
“They give me updates twice a day, you know, progress we’re making, ‘we brought in this many additional crew.’ It’s just, I think it’s sad to say we’re kind of getting used to this disaster response mode,” said Frank.
Emergency Management said this was the biggest level storm the state has seen since 2007.
In Middle Inlet, town officials say it may be weeks before contractors are able to help with some of the bigger messes.
“Everybody is so busy up here with this storm damage, can be quite some time before they get to it. Some of the tree companies I talked to, a month-and-a-half, two months backed up already, so it’s going to be a while.”
Emergency Management reminds people, as cleanup continues, to put safety first when using power tools and moving branches.
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