News and HeadlinesState News

Actions

3 hospitalized after part of a tree falls on them in Whitewater Memorial State Park

Three were hospitalized after part of a tree fell on them at a campsite in Union County, Indiana
Posted at 11:45 AM, Jul 04, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-04 11:45:14-04

LIBERTY, Ind. — Three people were hospitalized after part of a tree fell on them Sunday at a campsite in Whitewater Memorial State Park, according to an Indiana conservation officer. Their injuries were not considered life-threatening.

“Everything just kind of culminated together to where the winds and the storm just happened to be in that same location where it caused the limb to come down and they happened to be in that same exact spot where it was coming down,” said Travis Stewart, an Indiana Conservation Officer.

Stewart said the people injured are part of the same family. He said the 15-year-old, 35-year-old and a person in their 60s were taken to the hospital.

Storms hit the campsite just after 5:30 p.m. Sunday. The family had already been hit by storms the night earlier. Part of a tree crashed into their car, smashing one of their back windows.

Campers nearby said heavy rain has impacted the site all weekend.

“A lot of trees, a lot of things flying around,” said Toni Rader, who was camping nearby.

Rader said she and her family took shelter Sunday night in their camper during the storm.

“Everything was kind of flying that way,” she said. “Then all of the emergency vehicles, they showed up.”

Karla Mendoza said she pulled up to the campsite just as the storms rolled in on Sunday.

“Immediately ran to the tent to hold it down because last year we came around this time, and the same thing happened,” she said. “Last year, we had a bigger tent, so it flew away.”

On Monday, Indiana Department of Natural Resources crews were busy clearing debris out of the campsite.

Stewart recommends campers monitor weather alerts while camping to ensure they are able to seek shelter before storms.