Lightning strikes spark structure fires in Sussex

Lightning strikes during a violent thunderstorm that swept through Sussex County Wednesday evening sparked three fires, according to investigation by Delaware Office of the State Fire Marshal.

Lightning struck two structures in the 32000 block of Woods Court east of Millsboro, Assistant State Fire Marshal Michael G. Chionchio said.

Damage was estimated at $15,000 to each home. 

A third lightning strike occurred in the 32000 block of Mount Pleasant Road near Laurel, causing an estimated $25,000 in damage, Mr. Chionchio said.

In addition, Georgetown Fire Company responded to Georgetown Middle School Wednesday night at about 8:50 p.m. following an alert from the Sussex County Emergency Operations Center.

A lightning strike July 17 damaged the unused chimney at Georgetown Middle School.

Upon arrival, Georgetown fire personnel found that a brick chimney had been struck by lightning, resulting in damage to the chimney.

Indian River School District spokesman David Maull said the unused chimney was near the back of the building.

“It did not result in a fire,” said Mr. Maull.

There was some damage to the chimney and roof and to the fire alarm system, both of which have been repaired, Mr. Maull said in a July 22 update.

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