BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Did the thunderstorms early Thursday morning in the Maryland and DC metro area wake you up from a deep sleep? Well, you weren’t the only one.

Hundreds of lightning strikes were captured on radar and with it came the rumbling and crackling of thunder, stirring many Marylanders awake from their deep sleep. Some on social media are describing the thunder sounds as small explosions.

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“The thunder was so loud last night I thought the earth cracked open,” said Twitter user ClassicShaina.

“That thunderstorm last night/this morning — y’all I thought it was the rapture. I jumped up so quick,” tweeted Tamara Pierre.

Others also tweeted about how loud the thunder was as well, believing it may have been an explosion.

“Last night I woke to get a snack and heard the loud a** thunder. I remember thinking “D*** God mad as s***”. Then I fell asleep,” Parada45 tweeted. 

In one five-minute span there were 156 lightning strikes, Meteorologist Tim Williams said.

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Northeastern Baltimore County — like Essex and Middle River — really got hit hard.

Williams said the unique sound created by the thunderstorm wasn’t due to any specific weather phenomenon, but instead due to the rate and frequency of the lightning strikes.

He also said the thunder sounded like it was low to the ground.

The lightning did cause a fire in Essex when it struck an apartment building. Twelve families are now displaced.

Stay up-to-date with the latest forecast by downloading the WJZ weather app.

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CBS Baltimore Staff