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Associated Press
In response to warning sirens, 4-H’ers run through a downpour Wednesday as severe weather hits the Wabash County Fairgrounds in Wabash.

2 injured as storms hit Peru; gusts down lines across state

– Severe thunderstorms packing wind gusts as high as 60 mph damaged several buildings and possibly caused injuries in the north-central Indiana city of Peru amid damage across the state that left thousands without electricity.

Peru, about 50 miles southwest of Fort Wayne, appeared to have taken the worst hit with minor damage to two grocery stores, a gift shop and a medical center and as many as eight mobile homes.

“There was nothing on radar that showed anything coming in,” Miami County Emergency Management Director Kris Marks said. “It just sprang up and boom.”

A tornado might have made a brief touchdown, Marks said. No weather watches or warnings were in effect for the area at the time.

Two people suffered minor injuries, he said.

Damage to the mobile homes was minor, such as broken windows or being blown off their foundations, Marks said.

The storms that swept the state felled tree limbs and power lines.

Duke Energy and Indiana Michigan Power Co. reported about 30,000 customers lost electricity at times Wednesday.

The weather service says authorities and a trained spotter estimated wind gusts of 60 mph near Switz City, west of Bloomington, and in Whitley County, west of Fort Wayne.

Downed trees blocked several state highways and local roads in Jay County, dispatchers said.

The weather service posted a flood warning for northern Carroll County in north-central Indiana after estimating a slow-moving storm could dump up to 2 1/2 inches of rain on that area.