Lightning strikes are believed to have ignited at least two house fires Friday morning as a violent thunderstorm raged through Shelby County.
The Shelby County Fire Department (SCFD) said it responded to a “surge of emergencies” from midnight to about 3:30 a.m. The department dispatched roughly the same amount of calls during that time than it typically does in a 24-hour period, it said.
Fires at two homes in Cordova were reported within five minutes of one another, the SCFD said.
A Shelby County Sheriff’s Office deputy reported the first fire at 3:33 a.m. Fire engines from several departments responded to the fire in the 1600 block of Far Drive. The residents were unaware of the fire that was burning at the peak of the garage roof but made it safely out of the home. The 2,300 square-foot home was saved with moderate damage, according to the SCFD.
Five minutes after that fire was reported, a blaze was reported on another home about a mile away. A 911 call sent fire engines to the home in the Woodland Edge subdivision close to the corner of Macon and Houston Levee. Damage to the 3,600 square-foot home was heavy, according to the SCFD, but no injuries were reported.
“Both are believed to have started by lightning strikes,” according to a news release from SCFD.
Firefighters were later dispatched to a Lakeland home at 8 a.m. Friday. The crews arrived at 8:07 a.m. and had the fire under control at 8:15 a.m. No injuries were reported and the damage was moderate. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, according to the SCFD.
The department said it received aid from the Arlington, Millington and Memphis City Fire Departments.