Lightning damages repair shop

July 17, 2009 6:21:01 AM PDT
Lightning destroyed part of a large auto repair and parts business near Bourbonnais. The lightning struck late Thursday night as storms rolled through. It hit the roof of one of three large buildings at the Acme Auto Parts business.

The fire quickly engulfed the building, which is used as a repair and machine shop.

Dozens of firefighters from several neighboring towns were called to help fight the flames. They were initially having trouble getting water because there were no fire hydrants nearby.

"All I heard was the lightning strike, and then I saw it was a flash, fire. I called 911. That was it," said Robert Washington, Acme employee.

"It was a very large body of fire, we had to work defensive immediately. We did not put anybody inside the building; it was not safe. Because it's a rural area, we don't' have a water supply on the property," said Chief Ed St. Louis, Bourbonnais Fire Protection District.

No one was hurt in the fire. The business was closed for the night when the lightning struck.


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