November 21, 2014

Medina
Intermittent clouds
16°F

Hinckley home scorched by fire after lightning strike

HINCKLEY TWP. — A 5,200 square-foot home received major damage when a fire caused by lightning a strike burnt Tuesday night for nearly five hours.

Firefighters responded shortly after 9:30 p.m. Tuesday to the fire at 920 McKee Trail. Homeowner Kurt Wetzell, who was watching the Cleveland Indians’ game last night when lightning struck, said this morning he and his wife, Sharon, were able to escape the home without injury.

A lightning-strike fire scorched a large portion of a home Tuesday night at 920 McKee Trail in Hinckley Township. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY STEVE GRAZIER)

A lightning-strike fire scorched a large portion of a home Tuesday night at 920 McKee Trail in Hinckley Township. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY STEVE GRAZIER)

“I was knocked right out of my chair watching the Indians,” said Kurt Wetzell, who noted his sound system was melted due to the effect of the lightning strike. “I’ve never seen anything like this. The house was in full ablaze within two or three minutes.”

A bolt of lightning struck the top, northwest corner of Wetzell’s home, which was constructed with wood, stucco and brick. Most of the contents inside the home this morning were covered in black soot or burnt to a crisp, Wetzell said.

Home restoration specialists were assessing damage at the residence this morning. Wetzell said he was not sure if the home could be remodeled, or if he and his wife would have to tear down the remainder of the house and rebuild.

“It doesn’t look real good,” said Wetzell, who has lived at the residence since 1983.

Firefighters from Hinckley and Granger townships, Brunswick, Brunswick Hills and Brecksville responded to the blaze. Wetzell noted firefighters worked until about 2:30 a.m. today in extinguishing the fire.

Contact Steve Grazier at (330) 721-4012 or sgrazier@medina-gazette.com.