Lightning strike sparks basement fire in Williamsburg Drive home

Firefighters respond to the scene of a basement fire on Williamsburg Drive Wednesday, just before midnight. Monroe Volunteer Fire Department No. 1 photo

MONROE, CT — A family quickly evacuated their home on Williamsburg Drive just before midnight Wednesday, when smoke detectors sounded. A lightning strike amid the heavy rainstorm had hit a tree in the backyard, before following a path into the house.

Monroe Fire Chief Kevin Catalano said three dozen volunteer town firefighters responded with six engines and a ladder truck and quickly contained the fire to the area of origin in the basement.

“Due to smoke and fire damage to basement mechanicals the residents could not return to the home for the evening and stayed with family,” he said. “There were no injuries.”

This tree was struck by lightning, causing the fire. Monroe Volunteer Fire Department No. 1 photo

Investigators determined the lightning strike caused the fire.

Catalano said working smoke alarms, a quick evacuation and notification to 911, and closing the doors near the fire area all helped to mitigate the damage.

Firefighters from Monroe, Stevenson and Stepney were assisted at the scene by the White Hills Fire Company, the Monroe Police Department, the Fire Marshals Office and the Monroe Volunteer Emergency Medical Service.

All units cleared the scene by 1:30 a.m. Thursday, according to Catalano.

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