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Lightning Caused Warren Co. Fire That Injured Two

12 July 2019 Front Royal/Warren County News

The Warren County Fire Marshal’s Office determined that lightning was the cause of a blaze late last week that injured two firefighters.

First responders arrived at 24 Markham Farm Road last Friday (7/5/2019) morning to find smoke coming from a home’s attic and first floor. When they entered, the floor of the residence collapsed, causing two firefighters to fall into the building’s basement. They were able to self-evacuate, and were treated for non-life threatening injuries. 

Afterwards, Fire Chief Richard Mabie ordered a detailed review of this incident’s response and action plan, and the Fire Marshal’s Office worked with the National Weather Service to analyze lightning strike events during the evening of July 4. It was found that between the hours of 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. a total of 95 cloud-to-ground lighting strikes made contact with the ground within a 3 mile radius of the home. The most significant was recorded at 7:33 p.m., and took place in the immediate area of the residence. In a Friday release (7/12/2019), Fire Chief Richard Mabie said that “this type of incident is rare and just proves that severe weather advisories and warnings should be taken seriously.”

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