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Multiple Homes, 16-Year-Old Struck By Lightning In Harford County

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Ileto Christie 370x278 (2) Christie Ileto
Christie Ileto joined WJZ's News Team in the fall of 2012. She was...
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ABINGDON, Md. (WJZ) — A new warning about the serious danger of lightning strikes, as we get into the summer months. Harford County is recovering from damage and even injury after Wednesday night’s active storms.

Christie Ileto has more from emergency responders.

Flashes of lightning click in the stormy skies, leaving behind severe damage Thursday at one Abingdon home.

“Like a cannon exploding,” said Marilyn Skinner.

Officials say what Skinner heard was a bolt of lightning strike her neighbor’s home across the street.

“I looked out the window across the street and a flame was shooting out the back of their house,” Skinner said.

The Harford County Fire Department says a second home in Aberdeen caught fire after being hit by a bolt, while a 16-year-old is recovering after he was indirectly hit by lightning while watching the storm.

EMT Josh Burkins responded to the call.

“The lightning actually came down on top of the car. From when it hit the car, it sort of went out through the ground and came up into him,” he said.

Reports say Maryland is one of the top ten states for lightning fatalities, with 126 deaths over the past 50 years.

Last year, an Anne Arundel County family almost lost their 19-year-old son, Connor Benson. He and his friend were standing in wet sand securing boating equipment on a beach when a bolt of lightning struck nearby.

Studies show lightning strikes peak in the summer during the late afternoon and evening hours.

Still, fire crews say lightning strikes in Harford County are rare.

“It’s not common to see as many lightning strikes as we did last night,” said Jennifer Chenworth-Price, Harford County Fire and Rescue.

But for some residents, they’re just banking on the saying “lightning never strikes the same place twice.”

Last week, a home in Middle River and a church in Monkton were struck by lightning.

This week is lightning awareness week. For more information on how to stay safe during a lightning storm, click here.

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