(11-6-17) On Sunday, November 05, 2017 shortly after 2:10 PM emergency sirens were activated in Mercer County as a result of a major storm coming through associated with a tornado. Weather radar also indicated rotation in the storm with a high likelihood of tornadic activity. Celina Police officers posted near the south west edge of town spotted a funnel cloud headed towards the city.
A tornado did enter the city from the southwest causing damage to a home along Lakeshore Dr. The tornado then apparently crossed the lake in a northeast direction. It caused damage to Wendy’s Restaurant, Lakeshore Auto, a few more residences in the area of E. Market St. As the tornado continued in a north east direction Crown Equipment suffered severe damage along with several businesses along Havemann Rd. These include Dollar General, Dunhams, C-Town Wings, Ruler Foods and others. Most businesses in that area had some damage to one degree or another. A further damage assessment will be done in the morning by area agencies.
Eight people within the City limits were treated for injuries by area EMT’s from Celina, Coldwater and Rockford. Four of those were transported to area hospitals with non-life threatening injuries. There was no loss of life in Celina due to this storm.
Celina Police and Fire Departments responded with all available personnel both on and off duty. As well as all service departments within the City, including electric, street and water crews. The City of Celina received assistance from Montezuma, Rockford, Mendon and Chickasaw Fire Departments. Buildings were searched for any casualties as well as for gas and electrical hazards.
Also assisting with law enforcement and traffic control were the Ohio State Highway Patrol, New Knoxville Police Department, MCERV and the Mercer Co. Sheriff’s Office.
Mayor Jeff Hazel responded to the areas struck by the tornado as well as Senator Keith Faber. Both directly assisted with the ongoing emergency. Senator Faber did also provide additional propane tanks to keep the Celina Police Command Center running through the night. Mayor Hazel did declare a State of Emergency for the City of Celina to free up additional resources from the State of Ohio.
The Celina Police Department urges people to stay away from affected areas. As tempting as it is to go look, the additional traffic causes serious issues for people trying to get utilities on, roads open and debris cleaned up. Please give us a couple of days to make it safe for everyone. We were blessed with low casualties and no fatalities, help us keep it that way.
We would like to thank Westside Carryout as well as Kentucky Fried Chicken for assisting with food donations for responding personnel.