A storm with strong winds downed trees, a barn and power lines and set fire to a home all in the Bargersville area.

By the ways the trees were downed, officials think the storm could have included a downburst, which can produce strong winds, Johnson County Emergency Management director Stephanie Sichting said. The storm that passed through on Tuesday afternoon was unexpected, Sichting said.

“A little dot on the radar caused all this,” she said.


Police were called to multiple homes and businesses where alarms were going off, and firefighters went to a house fire caused by a lightning strike and damage caused by downed trees, including a tree that fell on a house, Sichting said.

The damage was mainly contained to the Bargersville area, especially near Whiteland Road, she said.

There, residents reported multiple trees down, and highway department workers were sent to clear debris from the busy east-west route. Large limbs and branches were twisted and ripped from multiple trees lining Whiteland Road, from Saddle Club Road to State Road 135, Bargersville Fire Chief Jason Ramey said.

That damage showed this was more than just a typical storm, he said.

Firefighters from Bargersville, Greenwood, Franklin and White River fire departments were called out to three different calls in a couple hours after the storm, Ramey said.

In the 3700 block of Whiteland Road, a tree had fallen on a home, causing damage to the home, he said.

Anthony Carpenter, 47, and his mother, Linda Carpenter, 73, were at the home watching television when a tree slammed through the roof of the house, landing in the room where they were.

No one was injured, Anthony Carpenter said.

“I just jumped up and told her to get out of the room,” he said.

Crews were also called to a barn that collapsed along Whiteland Road from what appeared to be strong winds, Ramey said.

And at the same time, firefighters were also battling a blaze caused by a lightning strike to a home in Kensington Grove, near Stones Crossing and Morgantown roads. Firefighters evacuated the home next door at one point, because of fear the flames could spread due to the winds, Sichting said.

Six people were home when a lightning strike started the fire in a home in the 2800 block of Shadwell Place. The residents did not know the house was on fire until someone passing by stopped and got them out, Ramey said.

Firefighters went into the home to battle the blaze, but had to get out just before the roof and ceiling collapsed, Ramey said.

No one was injured, he said.


Author photo
Annie Goeller is managing editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at agoeller@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2718.