High Winds Damage Buildings in Western Chicago Suburbs

April 4, 2007

The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado-like microburst caused damage to a number of buildings in towns west of Chicago and left 11 people injured over the weekend.

Winds reached between 95 and 105 mph during the storm that moved quickly across northern Illinois late Saturday, according to Carol Stream Police Chief Rick Willing.

The most severe damage was recorded at the Covered bridges apartment complex in Carol Stream, where more than 100 residents were forced from their homes.

The sudden winds peeled the roofs off three buildings and did extensive roof and wall damage to six others, rendering 65 units unsafe for habitation, according to Willing.

Willing said ambulances took six residents to area hospitals with injuries from flying debris, but all of them were ambulatory. He said another five people drove themselves to the hospitals for treatment.

“We don’t have their conditions, but none of the injuries appeared to have been life-threatening,” Willing said.

Winds also blew a hole in a wall at the nearby Wheaton Christian Center in Carol Stream, where a broken gas pipe ignited but was quickly extinguished by firefighters.

Meanwhile, in neighboring Aurora, Battalion Chief Dave Rygh of the Aurora Fire Department said that high winds did minor damage to and apartment building there. No injuries were reported.

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