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Published: Tuesday, 7/17/2012

Springfield Twp. cleanup likely to last into August, officials say

BY CASEY SUMNER
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Workers Dave Tillman, left, Floyd Mitchell III, and Robert Swartz load branches felled by the July 5 storm into a chipper as Springfield Township continues its cleanup efforts. Workers Dave Tillman, left, Floyd Mitchell III, and Robert Swartz load branches felled by the July 5 storm into a chipper as Springfield Township continues its cleanup efforts.
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Cleanup efforts from a storm that barreled through Springfield Township July 5 will likely continue into August, township officials said Monday.

The cleanup efforts aimed at helping residents get rid of brush from their yards will likely last another four weeks, according to a report submitted by the township's department of public services at Monday night's board of trustees meeting.

Under the current plan, said Mike Hampton, public service director for Springfield Township, residents can haul their brush to the street, and the township will take care of it.

"To date, we've cleared 82 dump-truck loads of chipped brush," he said.

The July 5 storm, which had wind gusts as high as 89 miles per hour, damaged more than 60 structures throughout western Lucas County and left nearly 60,000 Toledo Edison customers without power, officials reported. A Springfield Township man died when a tree fell on a vehicle in which he was sitting in front of his residence.

Mr. Hampton said the cleanup would last as long as necessary.

"We're going to be there however long it takes to pick up all the brush," he said.

Township services so far have cost $9,272, he said, which includes payroll, fuel costs, and all the other miscellaneous expenses associated the with the cleanup effort.

The meeting also featured a report from Lucas County Emergency Management Agency officials that detailed the storm damage. Officials there reported that six homes were destroyed; nine suffered major structural damage; 16 suffered minor structural damage, and 39 were otherwise affected by the storm.

The damage does not qualify Springfield Township for federal assistance, said Leslie Kohli, township administrator. A final damage amount has not yet been calculated, officials said.

Federal relief, she said, requires a minimum of 25 homes destroyed or severely damaged, with the requirement that at least 40 percent of those affected are uninsured.

No one in Springfield Township whose home was destroyed was also uninsured, said Ms. Kohli.

She praised the community's swift response to the recent storms. The township declared a state of emergency at a special meeting the day of the storm, that was well attended by community members, she said.

She particularly praised local churches for setting up food services and cooling centers to give victims dealing with the heat a place to go.

Contact Casey Sumner at: csumner@theblade.com or 419-724-6084.



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