UPDATE: Wittenberg residents survey storm damage - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Wittenberg residents survey storm damage

by Colby Robertson

WITTENBERG (WAOW) -- The community of Wittenberg is picking up the pieces after a severe storm rips through their village.

High winds uprooted trees and ripped apart roofs throughout the Wittenberg community. The National Weather Service says a tornado did not touch down. Surveyors with the weather service found straight line winds, from 70 to 80 miles an hour, caused the damage.

In a matter of seconds, the community of Wittenberg, literally uprooted.

Village President Wes Messier says, "It took out the entire power to the village. We had extreme tree damage, house damage, business damage, hail damage, a lot of water damage."

A storm like this leaving a trail of damage. Too much damage for village leaders to assess in a day.

Messier says, "We're setting up teams right now to go block by block, assess the damage and help home owners with tree damage and power outages."

Over at the high school some of the most extensive damage was done to the roof, you can see here, completely ripped apart by the storm.

Wittenberg-Birnamwood Superintendent Garrett Rogowski says, "As a result of the roof damage we had some internal damage to the high school building. A large section of the gym floor was affected and that's starting to warp and curl on us, so we're trying to get a handle on that."

The ventilation shaft on the roof raised and lowered into the gym ceiling leaving a hole. Rain leaking onto the gym floor, computers and classrooms.

Rogowski says, "It's going to be put a kink in some things, but we'll address it, be proactive with making sure we follow through with everything and do what we need to do to get this school year off and running."

An entire community cleaning up, helping each other pick through all this devastation.

Messier says,"The storm came through about 5:15 and by 5:30 residents volunteers were already on the scene pulling trees off the road, cutting them up, removing debris and helping their neighbors. The turnout was phenomenal."

The Red Cross and Salvation Army were on hand throughout the day to help families with anything they needed.

As for the high school, the superintendent says he's thankful it was summer and there were no students in the building when the storm hit.

Online Reporter: Colby Robertson

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