Lightning Zaps Baltimore County Home, Displaces 4: Officials

The fire caused the roof to collapse, officials said.

Home in Middle River struck by lightning. (Credit: GoFundMe)
Home in Middle River struck by lightning. (Credit: GoFundMe)

Four people were displaced after lightning struck a home in Middle River overnight, the Baltimore County Police Department reported.

After 1 a.m. on Thursday, first responders were called to the unit block of Bogby Court for a house fire, the report said.

The homeowner said he was awakened when lightning struck his residence, according to officials. 

“We just heard that big bang, and then we knew he had to get the hell out," Lou Orzech, who owns the house, told WJZ.

When firefighters arrived, they saw flames coming from the roof, which ultimately collapsed, according to the report.

The blaze also caused damage to adjacent homes, the report stated.

By 2:34 a.m., the fire was placed under control, after 13 pieces of equipment from Baltimore County responded to the incident, according to the report.

There were no injuries from the fire; however, officials said four people were displaced as a result.

A woman who identified herself as a relative of the Orzech family said that seven individuals were home at the time of the fire, four of whom lived there, and all got out safely, though the house was "totaled." She created a GoFundMe campaign to help the family get back on its feet, with a goal of raising $10,000.

By 9 p.m. on Thursday, the fundraising page showed that 184 citizens had contributed a total of $7,070.

This is the third time lightning has struck the street in Middle River in recent years—a home 200 feet away was hit in 2008, on property where a tree was also zapped before that, according to Baltimore meteorologist Justin Berk. It's not unheard of for lightning to strike in the same neighborhood, Berk said, noting that in Reisterstown, lightning hit two homes on the same street in a 10-year period.

Ashley Virginia June 20, 2014 at 02:16 PM
Goal is now 15,000


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