Area storms cause damage, power outages
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APEX, N.C. — Some people in Wake County cleaned up after severe thunderstorms swept through the area Friday.
Initial investigations show lightning sparked at least two house fires. A family in Apex is one of those having to clean up after lightning struck their home. The homeowner said the bolt struck the second floor and caused smoke damage to the inside of the home.
"The whole bathroom just lit up. It was blue. The chandelier lit up [and I] started smelling smoke. Everyone ran out of the house," said homeowner Cindy Cotton.
Cotton's neighborhood is just one area that felt the effects of the fast moving storm. In Morrisville neighbors say a house fire was also the result of a lightning strike. Throughout the area police were busy responding to calls of tree damage.
A downed power lines along U.S. 1 near Exit 98 B slowed traffic and caused significant delays. Friday's thunderstorm is just the latest in a pattern of evening storms that have followed hours of high temperatures during the day.
"The atmosphere with a little trough over the state causes a little bit of instability. We get one thunderstorm developing and basically the air coming out of those thunderstorms the outflow can trigger additional thunderstorms," said Chief Meteorologist Gary Stephenson.
Anyone who needs to report a power outage can call Progress Energy's hotline at (800) 419-6356.