Lightning strike ignites house; man, dog escape uninjured

  • Sat Jul 14th, 2012 3:04pm
  • News

Associated Press

RENTON — Fire officials in the Seattle suburb of Renton say a man’s house caught fire when lightning hit it, blowing the homeowner across his living room and causing at least $100,000 damage.

On a Friday that saw multiple lightning strikes around the Puget Sound region, Robert Smith’s experience was among the most dramatic. As he told KOMO-TV, “The house blew up.”

Renton Deputy Fire Chief Erik Wallgren said the fire started during an intense thunderstorm.

The 57-year-old Smith described his experience as “like 15 sticks of dynamite by your ear, you know, that blew up — and then you were across the room.”

Smith said his dog Savannah sailed across the room and landed on the floor next to him. Then he felt her pushing him toward the door to escape the flames. Both made it out safely. Smith was treated at a hospital for smoke inhalation and minor injuries.