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Storm rips off part of roof from apartment building in Chicago suburb

Wall and roof collapse as storm hits Mundelein apartment building
Wall and roof collapse as storm hits Mundelein apartment building 02:03

CHICAGO (CBS)-- Several families lost their homes when a suspected microburst hit an apartment building in Mundelein Tuesday night.

Severe and dangerous storms brought tornadoes and hail to Chicago area Tuesday evening. A tornado watch was in effect for most of the evening for all Illinois counties in the area. 

A building at 32 Washington Boulevard in Mundelein suffered heavy damage, as a wall and a large piece of the roof collapsed in the storm. The Mundelein Fire Department worked late into the night to help the victims.

A child was hit by falling drywall, but didn't need medical treatment. 

Fire Chief Bill Lark said the building was left uninhabitable, but the structure was deemed safe enough to allow residents to collect personal belongings. Tuesday night, families were escorted one-by-one into their homes to get clothes and medication to take with them, as fire officials worked to ensure the displaced residents had temporary housing Tuesday night. 


Lark said 21 families who live in the building would either stay with family or would be offered temporary shelter help.

Most of the damage appeared to be contained to the units on the top floor of the complex.

Neighbors said it started with heavy rain and wind, then they could hear something going wrong with the apartment building itself.

One neighbor said she was terrified as she saw all of the debris swirling around outside of her home.

"I was in the kitchen, and I could see everything going around like a circle right over here, and things throwing around all over the place, just all over. It sounded like a train, like a train crash" Janet Scales said.

Scales said she hasn't seen anything like that before in the 25 years she's lived in the building.

"This is a first," she said.

Other neighbors said they had no idea the storm was coming.

Lark said part of the roof was removed from the building.

Wednesday morning, the building manager was starting the damage assessment process. Meantime, the American Red Cross was providing assistance to families who were left homeless.

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