Lightning causes `explosion` and fire at South Barrington home - FOX 35 News Orlando

Lightning causes `explosion` and fire at South Barrington home

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SOUTH BARRINGTON, Ill. (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Northwest suburban fire crews were forced into a "defensive operation" due to the heat and rapid spread of a Tuesday afternoon house fire caused by a lightning strike, Pioneer Press is reporting.

"Crews made an initial interior attack on the fire and were forced from the home by a backdraft causing a partial collapse of a rear portion of the roof," the Barrington Fire Department said in a statement Wednesday.

"The fire continued through the entire attic space. Due to the type of construction materials used and the rapid spread of the fire, Incident Command ordered a defensive operation. Multiple hot spots in concealed areas slowed the extinguishment of the fire," the statement said.

The department received the call at 12:10 p.m. Tuesday and by the time first responders arrived at 4 Terra Vita Dr. seven minutes later, flames had already torn through the roof and there was heavy smoke.

Hoffman Estates resident Amy Hill, who spotted the blaze while driving to the home next door, reported that the home was struck by lightning. The fire department's investigation confirmed the apparent lightning strike.

Fire officials also confirmed that several people were inside when the fire sparked but everyone got out safely. There were no injuries to firefighters.

Hill took several photos, which show fire crews dousing flames that destroyed the roof of the house. Firefighters attacked the blaze from above on a ladder truck, but the fire was still smoking more than two hours later.

"They can't get enough water to the house to put out the fire," she said.

The neighborhood, just west of Barrington Road between Mundhank and Algonquin roads, does not have fire hydrants. The water supply was provided by tankers.

Eight area departments responded on the initial call and additional crews assisted after the situation was elevated to a Box Level 10, officials said.

The 5.5-bath, 5,566-square-foot, multiple-story home, according to real estate searches, was valued at $1.2 million.

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