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Monsoon sparks fires, knocks out power to Valley

PHOENIX — The first monsoon of 2014 rolled through the Phoenix metro area Thursday, sparking two fires and knocking out power to thousands.

Both fires, one first-alarm and one second-alarm, were ignited near 43rd Avenue and Indian School Road just before 10 p.m. They fires may have been caused by lightning or a downed power line.

Phoenix Police Officer James Holmes said burned materials discovered Friday may be hazardous. As a result, the area between 40th and 39th avenues and Indian School and Clarendon was closed as a precaution.

Power was out for about 25,000 customers between Salt River Project and Arizona Public Service.

“From Queen Creek where they (the storms) kind of started all the way up through mesa, South Phoenix and up through West Phoenix,” said Jeff Lane with SRP.

Lane said both companies had crews on standby to get power back after the storm. As of Friday morning, about 300 people were still without power but it was expected to be repaired by noon.

The National Weather Service said more blowing dust and rain is possible Friday.

KTAR’s Clayton Klapper and Cooper Rummell contributed to this report.