Confirmed EF1 Tornado Hits Peru (VIDEOS & PHOTOS)

By Emma Koch
By Jeff Neumeyer
By Michael Klopfenstein

July 11, 2013 Updated Jul 11, 2013 at 10:08 PM EDT

PERU, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) --The National Weather Service confirmed an EF-1 tornado that touched down Wednesday in Peru, toppling trees and power lines and battered homes during a strong storm.

One of the harder hit areas was a business district on the west side of Peru.

The Aldi and Kroger Grocery stores off West Main Street both sustained wind damage, including the facade stripped off the Aldi.

There were vehicles in the parking lots that were tossed around and, in some cases, flipped over.

An Arby's Restaurant nearby, we’re told, had an air conditioning unit lifted up and smashed back to the ground.

Sort of a narrow strip in a mobile home park was pounded by high winds.

We talked to a maintenance man who was in the residential park when rains started to come down, before things took a sudden turn for the worse.

" The road was covered with trees, so we went back to the manager's house and waited til it died down, and got out here and started cutting it up," said Bobby Braswell, who used a chainsaw to try and help with the cleanup.

" Like he said, a normal, calm rain, it seemed like, just like any other day, and then in a blink of an eye, everything is everywhere, flying debris," said Nate Rader, who was also in the mobile home park when the storm rushed through.

Miami County Emergency Management Director Kris Marks showed us one mobile home shoved off its foundation.

Nobody is going to be living in it anytime soon.

" I think we did have a warning issued from National Weather Service, but by that time, we had the heavy rain hitting us, and within two minutes, this was all over with," said Marks.

Another area raked by the passing storm was a section of West 2nd Street.

100-year old trees in a city park took a beating.

Several were uprooted.

Other homes had roofs ripped off or trees that fell onto them.

Indiana Homeland Security has also taken inventory of the damage, which could trigger monetary assistance to home and business owners who will need to re-build.

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