Gaithersburg home destroyed after lightning strike

- A Gaithersburg home is a total loss after it was struck by lightning and caught on fire Wednesday evening.

Residents in the neighborhood said they witnessed the home in the 200 block of Midsummer Drive hit by lightning at around 6 p.m. When firefighters arrived, there was heavy fire coming from the attic of the house.

Several witnesses called 911 and said there was a woman inside the home at the time, but she was able to run out and was not hurt.

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesperson Pete Piringer said about 75 firefighters responded to battle and put out the flames. They prevented the fire from spreading to neighboring homes, but this house, which is valued at around a million dollars, and the belongings inside were mostly destroyed.

As the rain was pouring down in the neighborhood, one neighbor captured a short video of the flames from inside her home across the street.

"I saw it was a cloud of fog from the fire and I could smell the fire too,” said Christine Kim. “Then when I parked because I live right across, I saw the fire and the flames were just going, and I saw the roof was just completely on fire."

"There were a few booms,” said another neighbor. “There was lightning in front of her house and I saw a huge lightning in the back of her house, and that is when I knew. I sat down and looked out the window and saw flames.”

Fire officials said the storms also wreaked havoc in other parts of Montgomery County.

"We have a number of roads blocked by trees down,” said Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesperson Pete Piringer. “Wires down, transformers, a lot of collisions … a few houses struck by lightning, a number of power outages, so a wide variety of things.”

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