Lightning strikes West Chester home

WEST CHESTER Twp., Ohio -- Flames burst from the roof of a West Chester home after a damaging lightning strike Monday morning.

The blaze started shortly before 9 a.m. as the storm rolled past the home located in the 8800 block of Eagle Ridge Drive.

The West Chester Fire Department responded to the flames they say started after lightning struck the home's chimney.

Lightning strike

Ron Acres, his wife and his daughter only had enough time to grab a few items before fleeing the home.

"We heard a real loud bang and realized that the house got hit," Ron Acres said. "It hit the chimney and knocked the top of it off, and then shortly after that we realized the house was on fire."

WCPO reporter Jay Warren asked him what the emotional level was like after the lightning strike.

"Extremely high," he said. He tried to grab his car keys while his wife grabbed the wallet and her medication before running out of the burning home.

"We're ready for anything now."

Fire officials say the home sustained damage estimated at $250,000.

The family is staying with neighbors.

Lightning is the suspected culprit in a cracked telephone pole on Shawnee Run Road and Given Road in Indian Hill.

Lightning strike

Wires were reported on the ground in the area of the damaged pole.

Lightning also possibly struck City Hall in Cincinnati, causing a brief evacuation of the building.

Kevin Osborne, spokesperson for Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, tweeted about the incident:

Back to work: All's well at Cincinnati City Hall after brief evacuation due to a lightning strike in an elevator shaft.

Rain and storms are expected to threaten the Tri-State for the next 72 hours. Strong storms are possible at times and the area is under a slight risk for strong to severe storms through Tuesday night.

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