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Winds rip roof off UCA's Carmichael Hall, displacing students

UCA's Carmichael Hall was damaged to the point that students are displaced.

CONWAY, Ark. (KTHV) — After spinning up tornadoes in Western and Southwestern Arkansas last night, Friday’s severe storm turned into a massive line of wind and rain.

The gusts are to blame for damage that took place across Central Arkansas and on one college campus.

The University of Central Arkansas’ Carmichael Hall still has puddles of standing water from the storm. Students are just thankful their college home is standing and that no one is hurt.

“My roommate was like, Zoe you need to come in here right now your stuff is all over the floor and there's water pouring in our room,” recalled Zoe Clark.

She wasn’t able to salvage many valuables, but is thankful her laptop survived last night’s ordeal.

Clark and many others at UCA have a story to tell for years to come.

“It could've been worst. The building could've been torn down, but we're still alive today so thank God,” said another student, Patoreus Lewis.

Friday's severe weather ripped the roof off Carmichael Hall, forcing students who live on the third floor out the door.

"First we were in the stairway, then we went to the hallway. Then we saw water flooding out so they told us to go to the Student Center basement,” Makiya Coleman said.

The after effects of heavy rainfall can still be seen on the hallway floor.

Thankfully, cleanup crews managed to clear out most of the debris early this morning.

“Housing did a full assessment last night, we were dealing with immediate response. About 30 students needed another place to live. Many of them chose to go with a friend or family member. Those that didn't, we put them in other rooms on campus,” said Christina Madsen with UCA Communications.

Those 30 students quickly rose to 102 students, all who must now live elsewhere until the roof is replaced.

“Everything on my floor is wet. I had a lot of clothes that were wet, my shoes were wet,” added Clark.

Several cars parked on campus were also damaged in the storm.

"I had some Trix Cereal that got messed up, but other than that everything is good. A couple pairs of shoes got wet but they can dry,” Lewis said.

UCA thinks, at minimum, it may be a week before housing has the roof and all rooms fixed on the third floor before students can move back in.

Though there was extensive damage, no person was hurt.

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