UPDATE: Daylight reveals devastation at Eighth Street apartments

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A fearsome gust of wind lifted a large part of the roof off the apartment house at 303 Eighth St. Tuesday night. There were no injuries in the storm.

With the sunrise Wednesday came a clear view of the extensive damage caused to an apartment house at 303 Eighth St. in Perry when storm winds lifted most of the roof off the structure and sent it crashing to the ground below.

Happily, there were no injuries in the freak accident.


Perry Police Department Officer Josh Sienkiewicz was the first emergency responder to arrive on the scene about 9:30 p.m. He evacuated the residents of the four-unit apartment house.

The 4,200-square-foot multi-family residential property is owned by Jose Herrera and Ma Teresa Diaz Herrera, according to county records. It was built in 1985.

Omar Saenz, who owns the house directly east of the apartments, suffered property damage to his vehicles, but his house was spared.

“The wind carried it all the way over here,” Saenz said the the roofing debris. “It damaged two of my cars but didn’t hit my house.”

Along with the Perry Police Department, the Woodward Police Department, Perry Volunteer Fire Department and Dallas County EMS responded to the incident.

The 10 evacuees of the apartment house escaped the pounding rain that followed shortly before midnight when a second storm front passed through the Perry area. All were taken to the Perry Volunteer Fire Department station to meet with Central Iowa Chapter of the American Red Cross.

“It wasn’t until the police knocked on our door that we knew something was wrong” said Crystal Guzman, a resident of the four-unit complex. She said she was glad no one was hurt.

News crews from the urban center arrived early Wednesday to the scene of destruction at 303 Eighth St. in Perry.

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