Lightning destroys landmark Hartsdale home
Lightning is to blame for a house fire in Hartsdale that sent a family scrambling for safety Wednesday night.
According to officials, lightning struck the top floor of the three-story Sunset Lane home, hitting a sprinkler head that was in the attic. Flames soon engulfed the top floor.
Fire officials said it took about 10 different fire companies five hours to contain the blaze at the house, which is 105 years old. The home is located in a narrow, secluded section of the neighborhood.
"We had a great deal of difficulty getting [equipment] up to the scene," said Hartsdale Fire Department Chief F.J. Spinelli. "Most of the hand tools and equipment that needed to be brought in were carried in by members."
The house was destroyed, but homeowner Dr. Elon Schwartz was able to make it out safely with his family and pets. He was too shaken up to speak on camera, but said he was afraid that someone had been struck by the lightning.
One firefighter broke his ankle while battling the blaze.
For footage of the house fire, go to Channel 612 on your iO digital cable box and select iO Extra.
Click here for team coverage on a Rockland lightning fire.