The National Weather Service confirmed to WFPL News that preliminary surveys show at least one tornado touched down in Louisville on Wednesday night.
Crews found damage consistent with an EF1 tornado in the Glenmary subdivision, near Fern Creek. NWS crews will continue moving east from Glenmary to assess other nearby damaged areas.
Louisville officials are reporting no deaths or injuries from the severe storms.
At a news conference Thursday morning, Mayor Greg Fischer said most of the damage was centered around that area.
“We are very fortunate in terms of what appears to be no loss of life, no serious damage to people, which is always our number one concern,” he said. “But due to the damage that’s already been seen, I am declaring a state of emergency to the governor and state emergency management for the potential to assist locally with recovery efforts.”
The storm brought down several trees throughout the area, and even snapped some utility poles in half. The heaviest damage was in the Glenmary East subdivision.
Multiple houses suffered severe damage. Some had collapsed facades, and at least one roof was torn off entirely.
Republican Metro Council member Robin Engel, who represents part of the area, said his family was huddled in the basement during the “horrific” storm.
“Glenmary, our office, will be in touch with any residents that need any type of assistance,” Engel said. “We’re there for you. But we’re extremely grateful that the injuries were minimal.”
About 26,000 LG&E customers were without power last night, according to Vice President of Communications Chris Whelan. As of Thursday morning, it was down to about 9,700.
Whelan said she expects the bulk of those outages to be restored Thursday, but some could stretch into Friday. Customers can call 502-589-1444 to report downed lines.
“The heavy lifting is ahead of us,” Whelan said. “We’ve got about 160 wire-downs and 40 broken poles. That is going to take a lot of heavy lifting. I appreciate the patience of our customers as we restored power safely.”
Jefferson County Public Schools canceled classes Thursday. A district representative said many roads were impassable and nearly a dozen schools were without power this morning. Because of the power outages, the day is being treated as a snow day, due to many students not having access to NTI learning materials through the internet.
Metro Public Works said about 60 to 70 crew members are working to open streets Thursday. They’ll then start to haul away large debris in the coming days.
Residents can drop off all tree debris and bulky waste from the storms at five locations. They’ll be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday until April 30. Hazardous waste will not be accepted, and contractors and businesses will still be required to pay a fee.
- Public Works Yard, 10500 Lower River Road (enter from Bethany Lane)
- Charlie Vettiner Park, 5550 Charlie Vettiner Park Road (by disc golf course)
- Fern Creek Park, 8703 Ferndale Road
- Highview Park, 7120 Briscoe Lane
- Waste Reduction Center, 636 Meriwether Avenue
A respite center is open from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Fern Creek Chamber of Commerce, located at 6104 Bardstown Road. Residents can charge their devices and share their needs with personnel from the American Red Cross.
This story has been updated.