WKU faces slight damage due to storm, high winds


Tucker Covey

Two members of WKU Facilities Management discuss a sheet metal awning that detached from the Housing and Residence Life office, part of Southwest Hall during heavy winds on Friday, March 3, 2023.

Alexandria Anderson, Content editor

Editor’s note: The Herald will be adding photos and additional information as more reports become available. 

Western Kentucky University campus has reportedly not experienced any structural damage after a severe thunderstorm warning, high wind warnings and a tornado watch were issued for the Bowling Green area.

According to an email sent to students by David Oliver, WKU director of environmental health & safety, there have been “numerous reports” of larger trees and limbs that have fallen in the campus area.


Even as storms have slowed, Bowling Green and the WKU area remain under a tornado watch until 4 p.m. and under a high wind warning until 9 p.m., with wind speeds reaching up to 50 mph.

There have been reports of damage off campus, including a church roof blown off and falling onto SOKY marketplace and a tree fallen outside the credit union.

Jace Lux, university spokesperson, said in an email sent at 2 p.m. that the university was not aware of any damage to campus structures caused by the storm. He said the only repairs WKU maintenance crews were working on included a broken window in Pearce Ford Tower caused by high winds.

“We are not aware of any damage to campus structures caused by falling trees at this time, though two parked cars were struck by a falling tree near the credit union,” Lux stated. “Currently, maintenance crews are working to repair a broken window caused by high winds on the top floor of PFT.”

At approximately 3:15 p.m., an awning fell from the roof of the Housing and Residence Life office housed on the first floor of Southwest Hall facing Centennial Mall. The awning fell partially on the trees surrounding the office and sidewalk.

Bryan Russell, WKU chief facilities officer, said in an email that due to the severe wind conditions several trees and limbs have come down on campus with no injuries reported. He said there have also been “a couple doors and a storefront glass get broken.”

“DFM has been responding to all locations, clearing roadways, sidewalks and debris or pushing them to the side until tomorrow when it is safe for them to work,” Russell said via email.

Content editor Alexandria Anderson can be reached at [email protected].