NAPLES, Fla. — Neighbors living on 10th Ave S. in Naples said they felt a big lightning strike Sunday night. They said it hit so hard that it shook several homes in the area. The Naples fire marshal determined that lightning strike caused on of the homes to catch fire.
The fire left behind a charred ceiling and one wall completely stripped and exposed.
City of Naples Fire Marshal Corey Adamski said smoke lingered when crews arrived around 6:00 Sunday evening.
“Our first arriving crew did note that there was smoke coming from the eaves and some of the opening in the roof,” he said.
Adamski said the heavy thunder and lightning storms that passed through Southwest Florida this weekend are common this time of year, but its hard to tell where lightning will hit next.
“Nothing is going to be 100% just because it is an act of nature, and it is electricity trying to find a ground,” he said.
But, he said you can protect your home.
“Some things we can do to protect our houses from lightening is we can ensure that our house is grounded correctly and that our electrical system is grounded correctly,” he said.
Fox 4 Chief Meteorologist Derek Beasley explained you can ground your electrical system by using lightning rods or conductor cables.
“Cause the lightning to instead of hit your house, or if it does hit your house, it takes that electrical charge and actually directs it towards the ground,” said Beasley.
He also recommended getting surge protectors to prevent power outages. Electricity providers Florida Power and Light (FPL) and Lee County Electric Cooperative (LCEC) offer additional coverage for your surge protectors. Something beasley said is worth the extra cash.
“It’s a fact of life. You’re in Florida. We’ve got a lot of thunderstorms, and you’ve got to be protected,” he said.
Adamski mentioned the homeowners were out of town when the fire broke out, and luckily no one was hurt. He also reminded people to make sure your home is at least 30 feet away from any brush piles to protect your home from brush fires.