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Southbury dealing with the aftermath of Tuesday’s tornado

SOUTHBURY — One of the four tornadoes that touched down in Connecticut Tuesday landed right in Southbury and left the town in shambles.

A significant number of residents are still without power.

“Getting running water going and the refrigerator so we don’t lose all her food,” said Matthew Willman. “We had just gone food shopping.”

Willman’s family is lucky to have a generator but he said fuel remains scarce.

“Stations are running out of fuel and you have to keep going further and further out just to get that,” Willman said.

Willman, his wife and 7-year-old daughter were at their Jeremy Swamp Road home when the tornado knocked down several trees, taking out his shed, gazebo and left crater-like holes on his property.

Plans to sell his home are on hold for now.

“The insurance company will be coming out to assess everything and get it all cleared away and then try to either put it back on the market or see what happens,” he said.

Willman said it took just 10 minutes for the tornado to cause the destruction. He’s not sure if the insurance company will pay for the thousands of dollars worth of damage.

While his house was largely spared, Dave Polman, who lives on Kettletown Road, wasn’t as lucky.

“Tree on the roof,” Polman said. “And we checked in the attic and there’s a hole about 18 inches around in the roof.”

Poleman was once a first responder for victims of Hurricane Katrina.

He said his wife and dogs - all home at the time of the tornado - are lucky to be unharmed after it blew out many of their windows and tore through their 11-acre property.

“It was scary,” he said.

Poleman’s home is also using a generator as he waits for power to be restored unlike his neighbor, Tim Rose, who lives up the road.

“No generator, no power, Polman said. “We had three cases of bottles water and we’ve  been getting by with that.”

Rose and his wife’s home of 25 years was largely spared. The same cannot be said for their son’s car.