A Gwinnett County woman said she was getting ready for bed on the evening of May 14 when she saw lightning flash and heard a loud boom. A few moments later, she noticed an odor of smoke and discovered her home was on fire.
The woman was able to escape her Thornapple Trail residence unharmed, but the structure was heavily damaged.
Upon arrival at the Lawrenceville home, fire crews found heavy flames shooting from the roof and attic of the one-story house.
"Firefighters deployed attack hose lines and entered the structure to battle the blaze and conduct a primary search," Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services public information officer Capt. Tommy Rutledge said in a news release. "Fire crews were forced to back out moments later due to intense fire conditions and collapse of the roof in the center of the structure."
Crews used multiple hose lines to control the flames from the outside and also utilized an aerial ladder device as they worked to extinguish the fire and protect neighboring homes from radiant heat and hot embers.
According to fire officials, lightning is the cause of many house fires during thunderstorms.
"People should be alert to changing weather conditions and monitor local weather forecasts," Rutledge cautioned. "If you suspect a lightning strike, be sure to check the attic and basement. Evacuate immediately if you smell smoke or see active flames."
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