HARTVILLE, Mo. The severe weather moving through the Ozarks is causing widespread damage.
Heavy winds knocked down a store in Hartville, the Town and Country Supermarket.
“The units from the rooftops are off, so there are holes in the roof, there’s rain coming inside,” said Joe Polizzi, president, and CEO of Town and Country Supermarket.
“This is a pretty new store for us, so something like this to happen, was kind of, crazy, we couldn’t believe it,” said Josh Dugger, store manager of Town and Country Supermarket.
Dugger said there were around 25 people in the store at the time the storm hit, “when we found out it was coming, we called employees and customers in our produce cooler, and we kind of watched for it, got everybody in there, and right before it hit, we made it in there, and shut the door and waited until it was over.”
Dugger told KOLR10 about the employees and customers’ experiences, “it had actually hit hard, popped all our ears, and we made it in there, we can hear it whining outside, within a couple of minutes it was all over, but we could hear stuff hitting outside the store.”
Dugger said they were in the cooler for about ten minutes, “we didn’t get any service in our cooler, so we couldn’t call anybody, everybody was worried, can’t get a hold of their families or anything, they were scared. Everybody was scared, but there wasn’t much we can do except sit there and wait.”
Fortunately. nobody was hurt and everyone got out okay.
Dugger said, “the first thing we did is we came out and into the store, the ceiling had fallen in, the rain had fallen in, everything was wet.”
Polizzi explained their immediate next steps, “the very first thing we need to do is get this stuff removed and get the building boarded up.”
And what nearby residents can do when they need to get groceries, “we’ve got our Mansfield town and country, down the road there in Mansfield, which is where they shop for those who remembered, the store burned down, 8 or 9 years ago now, they’ll take good care of them over there, until we can get reopened here.”
Their top priority is to get rid of the debris.
They already called their insurance company and they need to assess the damage.