Fire Officials: Lightning Strike Likely Cause of Toano House Fire

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Fire officials estimate a house on Old Stage Road sustained $65,000 in damage after a suspected lightning strike. (Courtesy of the James City-Bruton Volunteer Fire Department)
Fire officials estimate a house on Old Stage Road sustained $65,000 in damage after a suspected lightning strike. (Courtesy of the James City-Bruton Volunteer Fire Department)

A home on Old Stage Road has been deemed uninhabitable after a suspected lightning strike, fire officials said.

People inside the home on the 100 block of Old Stage Road in Toano called 911 at 11:41 p.m. Thursday when they smelled smoke after a lightning strike, said Billy Apperson, the spokesperson for the James City-Bruton Volunteer Fire Department.

The first responding fire engine, a JCCBVFD unit, arrived seven minutes later and reported a heavy fire in the attic. By 11:54 p.m., the blaze was reported as “knocked down and under control,” Apperson said.

The home sustained heavy damage to the roof and attic, but the blaze did not reach the living area on the ground floor. Damage is estimated at $65,000 and the home is “not livable,” Apperson said.

A total of 21 firefighters – from JCCBVFD, James City County Fire Department and York County Fire & Life Safety – worked the fire, which was attacked from both inside and outside the home. Emergency personnel were on scene until 2 a.m. Friday.

While the cause of the fire is a suspected lightning strike, the blaze remains under investigation by the Fire Marshal’s Office.

No injuries were reported.