KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – Monday’s intense winds tore a large metal awning off a Kansas City building. It fell on a man who was getting out of a car below it, sending him to the hospital.
It’s a sight that stunned people who come to the strip mall at Blue Ridge Boulevard and Longview Road to shop.
“It was shocking,” said Michell Rambo, who was at the strip mall to get her nails done, a treat she decided to forgo after seeing what she did.
“Oh my God. I hope everybody’s okay,” said Jeanne Johnson of what first crossed her mind when she drove past the store on her way home from work.
The awning was ripped from above a clothing store called GenX.
Two cars were crushed below it. One sat with the passenger door still open and a ball cap on the ground next to it, alongside shattered glass.
Police said a man in the passenger seat was getting out right when the awning fell at about 5 p.m.
Johnson was sitting in her car in the parking lot, staring at the severed metal beams surrounded by yellow and red caution tape.
“I’ve just been sitting here just praying, just hoping that everybody is okay,” said Johnson
Police said a woman in the driver’s seat, who was still in the car when the awning fell, was not hurt.
Michell Rambo’s husband, Julius Rambo, found himself imagining what it must have been like for the people in that car, to have the mass of metal come crashing down without warning.
“This just looks so scary,” said Julius Rambo. “Something like an earthquake type of thing. And it could have been us, you know?”
Police said there was no one inside the other car crushed beneath the collapsed awning.
Police asked the GenX store to close while they secured the area. The grocery next door and the other business in the strip mall remained open.
The Kansas City Fire Department used a ladder truck to get to the roof to remove a section that hadn’t fallen from an adjacent wall of the building before the wind did so unannounced.
Michell Rambo and Johnson both referred to it as a sobering reminder of their own mortality, seeing something so sudden and so dangerous happening in a place they drive past every day.
“You never know when it’s going to be the final destination,” said Johnson. “Be ready.”
Police have not yet provided any details about how seriously the man was hurt.