Lightning strikes Regina couple's home early Thursday morning

·2 min read
This file photo shows a large wall cloud with lightning spotted near Gerald, Sask., earlier this July. (Submitted by Janina Kemp - image credit)
This file photo shows a large wall cloud with lightning spotted near Gerald, Sask., earlier this July. (Submitted by Janina Kemp - image credit)

A Regina family says it was a shocking early morning wake-up when lightning struck their three-storey home in the 2800 block of Victoria Avenue on Thursday.

"At 3 a.m., there was a tremendous lightning storm in which the flash of lightning woke up my wife. I was awakened by the clap of thunder," Aydon Charlton said.

The couple stayed in the bed until the smoke detector started blaring.

Charlton, who is 73, said they discovered the lightning had struck their roof, causing a fire in the attic.

"I could smell the smoke coming through the bathroom upstairs. I momentarily panicked, trying to remember where I put the fire extinguisher," he said.

"I realized that I should call the fire department and that was the smartest thing I did."

Charlton said the fire department is only about three blocks away from his place. The crew was on scene within five minutes of his call, with one truck in the back lane and the other in the front with hose.

Charlton said his house is one of the tallest in the block making it susceptible to the lightning.

He said his wife's phone was charging upstairs and "was fried and didn't work due to an electrical surge."

"Frankly, I was too shocked and stunned to be very scared."

Charlton said there was a "bit of damage," but the situation was under control very quickly. The fire department said the damage was relatively minor.

Though there is "a bit of mess" for Charlton to clean up, he said it could have been far worse.

"If we lived out in the country, it could have taken around half an hour for fire trucks to get there. We would have been toast."

Luckily the family also owns the house next door and will stay there until an electrician can check the wiring in their usual residence.

A spokesperson from Regina Fire Department said crews found a small but growing fire in the attic area and then set up outside to soak it down. Crews were on scene until after 4:30 a.m. CST.

Charlton said his house is 115 years old and would have "totally demolished" if he and his wife had not been home.

He said Thursday's fire has him thinking about installing lightning rods.

"Our house doesn't have a lightning rod. According to Benjamin Franklin, it is a worthwhile investment."

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting