Millions in damages from hail storm, Goshen School Board declare emergency

NOW: Millions in damages from hail storm, Goshen School Board declare emergency

GOSHEN, Ind. - Goshen Community School Board issues declaration of emergency for the district, following a big hail storm that caused lots of damage this summer.

The June storm-damaged buildings and some buses with a repair price tag in the millions. School officials said there are several million dollars in damages.

Tom Boomershine, the Facilities Director at Goshen Community Schools said the middle school was hit the hardest, but the whole district was affected, and some vehicles were even totaled.

Hail the size of golf balls hit Goshen in early June. Now Goshen Community Schools are left to clean up the mess.

“A couple of the school office vehicles were damaged beyond repairs, so the insurance company totaled those. And there were a number of school buses that were damaged by the hail,” Boomershine said.

As they investigated further, “we had reports of roof leaks,” he said. “We saw some of the damage to our single-ply roofing systems.”

You can even see the impact of the hail on the sidewalks, but for most of the damage, you need to look at the roof.

“We saw some air conditioning coil damage as well. We’ve seen aluminum trim damages,” he said.

It will cost them millions, but will only know specifics after their insurance providers, Liberty Mutual, come back with a report.

“They’re supposed to give us that lead time that we could receive that report then we can go out to our contractors and talk about the scope,” Boomershine said.

One parent of a Goshen Middleschooler said he remembers the day it hailed and remembers being surprised.

“We see storms before but not like that, with that many hail and the big sizes of hail,” Gilberto Silaga said.

When he heard about the damages, “it was scary because you send your kids to school and you want the best for them, the best school. Having some leaks, it is not good for the school, even for the students,” he said.

Boomershine said he just wants to get the repairs done.

“I need to get started this fall,” he said.

Hoping the most important repairs are finished before the next winter storm.

“We are concerned. We’ll probably have to make some repairs right away and others will be deemed for replacement,” he said. “Weather kind of dictates that work.”

He said the emergency declaration helps that process move faster.

“The emergency declaration would allow us to expedite the bid process since we are looking at this turnaround right away, getting these repairs started, we needed that,” Boomershine said.

Insurance experts came to review the damage, that report is supposed to be done soon and Boomershine said that is when they can start the larger repairs.

He said they hope to be done next year, but without the full scope of the project, he is not sure when exactly.

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