Following a local resolution signed by county board chair Bob
Farmer and Logan County Emergency Management Agency committee
chairman Dick Logan that declared Logan County a disaster area,
Logan County EMA director Dan Fulscher submitted the paperwork
asking for state and federal assistance.
The disaster and emergency time period to recover was first set
at seven days, but damage was so extensive that the time was
extended to 30 days
The local declaration led to a state response, which permitted
the use of state resources, such as from the Illinois Department of
Transportation and Department of Corrections, but still no money,
"We're hoping for a federal declaration," he said. If we are able
to get a presidential declaration, then there would be $100,000 made
available for cleanup. This would be the county's third application
for a presidential. We've had one on a flood and one on snow
removal, but we have never had one on a tornado before, Fulscher
If we receive a gubernatorial declaration, the cost will be borne
by the people who are out there right now; the utilities, the
townships and IDOT would be able to continue to help us. Also, any
public entity that had added costs on that night, such as overtime
by the sheriff's department, would get reimbursement.
The most heavily struck area was in southern Logan County, just
south of Mount Pulaski and in and around Latham. What was later
determined by the National Weather Service to be an F-2 tornado
destroyed or damaged homes, outbuildings, public utilities and
Over 65 homes and
farm complexes affected
One farm business
Over 60 outbuildings
Over 200 trees
communications tower (not in use) destroyed.
Eight of the
monster-sized electrical towers that carry 380,000-volt lines
The electrical towers cost $400,000 each in material, not
including labor. Each one of those structures takes up to three days
The lines affected carry power from Pontiac.
Four power companies suffered damage in the 10-by-6-mile area.
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The next major step in the cleanup effort will take place on
Tuesday. Dump trucks from the county, the city of Mount Pulaski and
other townships will assemble at 7:45 a.m. at Cross Brothers. The
trucks will go out to collect trees and debris.
The volunteer day March 18 had a great response. Seventy-five
people showed up and more than 10 pieces of equipment. New state
regulations do not allow government to go on private property for
cleanup. The volunteers were able to help property owners clear 44
trees on that day, Fulscher said. "It was just amazing what they did
for individuals that just didn't have the wherewithal to take care
of that," he said.
Cleanup was stymied a few days later. Only in Logan County can
you have two tornadoes go through and eight days later we have a
blizzard, Fulscher said. March 20 and 21 saw high winds. Freezing
rain, sleet and heavy, blowing snow struck the area and slowed
travel throughout the region.
Fulscher said thanks to the storm spotters, 911 dispatch, all the
emergency agencies that helped, the National Weather Service,
Channel 20 and Channel 17. He said a gentleman said he heard his
voice on the TV, recognized it and went straight to the basement
just in time. He said that Sheriff Steve Nichols went with him
"personally" the next day to every home the next day to make sure
people were OK.
Fulscher also thanked the county board for all the support over
the years that allowed the right communications equipment to be in
place. "I truly believe we saved some people from very serious
damage, if not their lives," he said.
If anyone knows of anyone who needs help with the damage, they
should contact the Logan County EMA office, (217) 732-9491.
Storm-related building permits
The county found one additional way to help storm victims. Anyone
with storm damage who needs a building permit will have permit fees
waived for 90 days from the date of the storm, planning and zoning
chairman Dale Voyles said. The offer stands for anyone needing to
repair, redo or upgrade after the storm. They can come into the
zoning office through the first week of June. The county needs to
keep a record, so you do need to get a permit, but there will be "no
charge," he said.