Springfield | No people were hurt, but the roof of the IBSA Building in Springfield was in poor condition after heavy winds blew part of it off.
A gust of high wind blew a section of the building’s roof into its north parking area around 4:20 p.m. Thursday, March 14. The part that blew off was the rubber membrane of the roof along with the underlying styrofoam that serves as part of the drainage system. High winds continued to blow smaller pieces into the parking lot over the next few hours.
The Illinois Baptist State Association staff heard a loud popping sound just before the section of roof crashed into the parking lot. Nearly 50 people – IBSA staff and building tenants – were in the building when the incident occurred.
IBSA Executive Director Nate Adams shared, “I haven’t seen or felt that kind of wind in a long time, but I’m still surprised at what it could do to the roof of a sturdy building like ours. I’m so thankful to the Lord that none of our staff, tenants, or guests were injured.”
The crew from Springfield Firefighters Local 37 was quickly on the scene. Stationed just down the street on Stevenson Drive crew members saw the incident happen. One first responder told the Illinois Baptist, “We were in our incident room and saw the roof come off the building. We knew we had to come right away.” The fire crew quickly evacuated the building.
Workers are spending Thursday night and Friday morning cleaning up debris and getting a tarp over the roof. The IBSA Building was open during regular office hours Friday. At least one vehicle was left with severe dents and scratches and others had minor damage.
The National Weather Service out of Lincoln, IL reported wind gusts as high as 61 mph at Abraham Lincoln Capitol Airport in Springfield Thursday.