By WAYNE ALLEN
PDT Staff Writer
OTWAY — Work continues in Otway to fix the damage caused by an F0 tornado that ripped through the town in March.
The storm ripped off the roof of the community center gym and caused damage to gym floor. It also toppled an Otway Fire Department storage building and caused damage to the roof of the village’s historic covered bridge.
Otway Fire Chief Rick Gamble plans to build a new fire station with insurance money from the former storage building and a possible loan. He said the insurance company agreed to pay $91,000 for the damage caused to the department’s storage building.
Gamble said the department has received some bids on what it would cost to rebuild at the site of the former storage building. He said bids came in as high as $180,000 and the department would need a loan for 100,000 to $150,000 more to rebuild.
When the department’s storage building was destroyed by the storm, a fire truck inside sustained damage.
“We just finished up with the insurance this week and they are giving us $7,500 on the truck to do some touch-up painting and beat out a few dents here and there,” Gamble said.
He said the department has set up a disaster relief fund.
“To date, there is about $14,000 in that fund,” Gamble said.
Several fire departments from across the region have donated items, from equipment to fire trucks. Earlier in the month, a volunteer fire department in Uniopolis, Ohio, in Auglaize County donated a 1983 pumper tanker truck. The department also recently received a 1984 E-One Engine donated by the Madison, W.Va., Volunteer Fire Department.
A company in northern Kentucky near Cincinnati donated fire turnout gear, including gloves and boots.
According to Otway Mayor Suzanne Nichols, the donated fire trucks and equipment will not fit in the department’s current facility and are being kept at fire department members’ homes for storage. Nichols said crews have finished work on the roof of the community center. The new gym floor is expected to be finished in the next couple of weeks.
She said the village is still working with the insurance company on fixing the roof of the covered bridge and removal of rubble from the former fire station storage building.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 208, or firstname.lastname@example.org.