Lightning blamed for house fire in Old Lyme - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Lightning blamed for house fire in Old Lyme

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Lightning struck a tree near a house on Talcott Farm Road and it sparked a fire early Wednesday morning. (WFSB) Lightning struck a tree near a house on Talcott Farm Road and it sparked a fire early Wednesday morning. (WFSB)
A snapshot from 4 a.m. Wednesday, when isolated thunderstorms were moving through, specifically to pinpoint lightning strikes, one of which hit in Old Lyme leading to a house fire. (Mark Dixon/WFSB) A snapshot from 4 a.m. Wednesday, when isolated thunderstorms were moving through, specifically to pinpoint lightning strikes, one of which hit in Old Lyme leading to a house fire. (Mark Dixon/WFSB)
OLD LYME, CT (WFSB) -

Lightning was blamed for a house fire that broke out in Old Lyme early Wednesday morning.

Fire officials said the lightning struck a tree near the house and the fire appeared to have extended to the building.

"We all heard a heavy lightning storm," said Chief  Tom Risom, Old Lyme Fire Department. "All firemen wake up when it's hitting around the area. We got up and said 'oh good we were spared.' Then the radios went crazy. We got a couple hits. This was a structure fire the others were just trees and poles. 

According to officials, crews were called to the scene at 29 Talcott Farm Rd. shortly after 4 a.m.

"As soon as I got here, I live about 2 miles away, we saw active fire in the basement through the doors to that garage and realized there was fire in the basement and it was coming up through the living room floor," Risom said.

Firefighters from surrounding towns were also called in for mutual aid. 

Risom said there were pieces of the tree all over the property.

"A lot of that wood blew up," he said. "And it looks like lightning came in through the power to that pool there and the pool equipment is over there and the hot tub there."

Risom said the lightning traveled to the house by way of some wires that were stapled to the underside of the living room floor.

"Those wires were carrying the full lightning charge [and] lit off everything it was touching along the way," he said.

A fire tanker became stuck in the Connecticut River. Risom said they typically park in it to get water to the scene and worry about pulling it out later.

Officials said there were no reported injuries and the scene was still active several hours after the initial report.

The people who were in the home and were able to get out safely.

"Lightning hit that tree," Risom said. "If you look around it's probably one of the tallest trees in this area so, that would be a problem."

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