WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) – A severe thunderstorm traveled through the area on Tuesday, hitting Trumbull County the hardest, especially the Courthouse Square area in Warren.
Still, organizers of the Warren Italian Festival say they plan to start this Thursday at 5 p.m., even after two tents on Courthouse Square were badly damaged.
The 120-foot long beer tent for the Italian fest is now a crumpled mess after strong winds and heavy rain blew through around 3 p.m.
“The winds were probably 50-60 miles an hour,” said Geoff Fusco, a festival committee member.
Fusco said he was there when the storm hit.
“Most of the crew were just trying to hold the tents down and then the next thing you know, we just hit the ground. Trees were falling. Two guys got hurt,” he said.
Workers on the scene say one of the men was sent to the hospital with a head injury and the other hurt his back but went home.
The two men were putting up tents around the bocce court when a large branch fell and knocked part of it over, mangling some of the pipes holding it up.
An example of how strong the winds were could be seen in the southwest corner of Courthouse Square, where a large, solid tree was knocked over from the base.
Another example of the wind’s strength could be seen at the Trumbull Art Gallery (TAG), where the plate glass windows were blown out.
“The rain was blowing sideways and it was really flying up the street, and all of a sudden there was a big bang and it blew our whole window out,” said Pat Galgozy, TAG’s executive director.
Also in the vicinity of Courthouse Square, at the Hippodrome building on High Street, a section of the roof blew off and settled onto an alley below.
A branch from a tree on the south side of E. Market Street blew across the street and ended up on the sidewalk in front of the Saratoga Restaurant.
Further up E. Market at Perkinswood Boulevard, a large tree snapped at its base and ended up against a house.
For a while, power was out in the area from Trumbull Memorial Hospital to downtown Warren. According to First Energy, at one point, there were 654 people without power.
As of about 12:05 a.m. Wednesday, 276 customers were without power in Trumbull County, with fewer than five from Warren.
Check First Energy’s website for updates.