Portland homeowners continue clean-up after tornado

Posted at 4:48 PM, Jul 01, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-01 18:16:42-04

PORTLAND, Mich. — Residents of Portland are cleaning up from last week’s tornado and they are turning to their insurance companies for help.

FOX 17 spotted several claims adjusters on the scene the day after the storm hit on June 22.

The EF-1 tornado caused an estimated $3.2 million in property damage, according to the City Manager, who claims he got that information from the Ionia County Emergency Manager.  That includes damage to four churches that were damaged, as well as homeowners.

Melanee Webert says the storm blew out her windows, knocked a tree onto her roof and also damaged her garage.  Part of the steeple from one of the damaged churches landed on her back porch. Fortunately, she wasn’t home with the storm struck.

“When we got here, we were just shocked at how bad it was,” Webert said Wednesday. “But I got right on the phone with the insurance company. They got out here first thing. They told me to do anything I needed to do for the immediate safety of ourselves and our home.”

Insurance paid to pull a massive tree off her roof first thing the following morning.  But since then, they’re waiting on city permits and with so many claims right now, there is a wait.

City Manager Tutt Gorman tells us that there are some older structures damaged that aren’t in compliance with current city ordinances or zoning laws, so that is an extra step that some homeowners are having to deal with.  A resolution is being presented at Monday’s city council meeting that works to alleviate some of these hassles.