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3rd house in Grayson County to be struck by lightning this year

Texoma has seen a lot of storms this spring, and with those storms comes lightning.
Updated: Jun. 8, 2021 at 7:05 PM CDT
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VAN ALSTYNE, Texas (KXII) - Grayson County fire officials say they’ve seen three houses in the southern part of the county get struck by lightning, and all three have left behind different amounts of damage.

“It’s that time of year and in the last 4 to 5 weeks, we’ve had three lightning strikes that have caused structure fires,” said Grayson County fire marshal John Weda.

Weda says lightning strikes are unpredictable, but what’s more unpredictable is the amount of damage it can leave behind.

“Here in the U.S. we average out to 25,00 strikes in a year. They don’t always start fires. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t,” Weda said.

“My wife turned to me and said, I bet we’ve been hit,” said Van Alstyne homeowner Craig Smith. In his case, there were no flames.

“All of a sudden there was a huge flash, and thunder at the same time- which of course indicates that something is close,” said Smith.

Smith says shortly after 9 p.m. Saturday night, he and his wife immediately checked their home for any smoke, or flames.

“Nothing!” said Smith. “No smoke, no flames, no holes in the ceiling, nothing. We thought maybe it was tree or something.”

So the couple went to bed, and about four hours later, at 2:30 the next morning, they smelled smoke.

Embers had been smoldering inside the home’s attic for several hours.

Firefighters were able to stop it from spreading throughout the house but say if the couple had decided to spend the night somewhere else, their home could have been destroyed.

“Had we gone to McKinney, this house would not be standing here today,” said Smith.

Like in this home in Gunter, struck by lightning just weeks ago.

Smith says his advice to anyone who thinks their home might have been struck by lightning: “I’d say, stay up a few hours. Make sure to keep checking.”

Fire officials say to always check your smoke detector’s batteries and make sure all devices are on and working.

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