DES MOINES, Iowa — Multiple lightning strikes overnight kept firefighters busy.
At 4th Street and Seneca Avenue in Des Moines lightning hit a “no parking” sign Thursday night. It ruptured a natural gas line and ignited a nearby tree.
The gas fed the fire, making it impossible to put out until MidAmerican Energy could shut off the gas line.
Lightning is also blamed for a fire at an apartment building in the Sherman Hill neighborhood.
Firefighters say the strike hit the second floor and started two different apartments on fire.
“It was scary. We didn’t necessarily see flames shooting out of windows but in that second window there you could see that there was a gentleman in the room while the firefighters were in the other room,” neighbor Liz Johnson said. “We didn’t see any flames coming out of the building until we saw firefighters come through the rooms and break open the wall, so it seemed like that was the source of most of the flames.”
It took crews several hours to put the fire out. No one was hurt or permanently displaced.