A Jasper family is safe after a frightening moment. Fire investigators are pointing to lightning from severe thunderstorms that swept through the Tri-State earlier today as what hit their home and sparked a fire.
The strike ignited the roof and spread through the attic of the home of Peter and Karen Legris, while three adults and three children slept just below.
“It looked like just orange flames,” their son Evan recalled.
It was not the Tuesday morning wake-up call the Legris family expected: heavy thunder and lightning throughout the morning and then, their home struck.
“When the lightning struck, the smoke detectors went off,” Evan explained.
Those fire alarms signaled to the three adults and three kids inside that something was wrong. When first responders arrived in the 900 block of N. Evergreen Drive just after 6 AM, they found flames shooting from the roof.
“We then used a water extinguisher to go up in that attic and extinguish the flames while the fire trucks were on the way,” explained Jasper Fire Chief Kenny Hochgesang
Although lightning strikes on homes remain relatively rare, data from the Insurance Institute shows that last year around $909 million in lightning claims were paid to almost 78,000 homeowners across the country.
These Jasper home repairs aren’t expected to come cheap.
“There’s an area where the fire burned. They will need to replace some of the different types of boards up there in the rafters, we estimate $15- to $20,000 in damage.”
All of the adults and children inside were able to get out unharmed.
Fortunately the family will be able to stay in their home as repairs get underway.