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Lightning Round: Thunderstorm Torches 2 Cars, Blows Up a Tree, Zaps a House

Sun June 27 2010 12:51 pm
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Video at three locations where lightning apparently struck with devastating results.

Firefighters in Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove and Mount Prospect were busy managing damage from intense lightning from a thunderstorm about 9 am Sunday. The storm caused continuous rumble of thunder for more than five minutes as the storm approached.

First report came in at Buffalo Grove on South Vernon Court for a tree on fire that was struck by lightning. Police and firefighters arrived to find a charred tree that was blown apart and split in half.

Next, Mount Prospect police and firefighters responded to a downed wire just north of Busse and Dempster on Knight Bridge. Firefighters reported a primary line down and arcing. ComEd was already on the scene to turn off the power, but two cars were totaled — fully involved in fire. One witness who lives at the Knight Bridge Drive address saw the lightning strike a high tension power line nearby. Another witness reported the high tension wires shook after the lightning strike.

Thirdly, an incident that wasn’t major for the fire department, but might have caused serious havoc on appliances and the electrical system of a house in the 1500 block of Peachtree in Arlington Heights. Lightning charred and melted siding, and charred and melted the doorbell. A blue flash was witnessed inside the house. An occupant standing inside the house saw spots after the blue flash was seen throughout the house. The blue flash seemed to emanate from appliances, such as the microwave.

Firefighters checked the attic and house and found no fire.

UPDATE: Lightning also struck the roof of a house in Palatine in the 1200 block of North Rosewood Court about 9:34 a.m. Sunday. Firefighters reported smoke and flames showing upon arrival and extinguished the fire within 20 minutes. Firefighters attacked the fire from the roof and with an interior attack. A firefighter suffered a minor eye injury, and was treated and released from Northwest Community Hospital. No civilians were injured.

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