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Monsoon storm brings lightning show to Phoenix area

(Twitter Photo/@PictureBilly)

PHOENIX – A blaze of a monsoon storm lit up the night skies over metro Phoenix on Wednesday, and in the process gave the fire departments plenty to do.

Nearly 3,000 lightning flashes fired across the Valley; nearly two dozen struck buildings and set off at least six small house fires, while other strikes took out power boxes, Capt. Danny Gile told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News early Thursday.

“They didn’t cause a lot of damage or harm anybody,” Gile said of the bolts that landed. There were 2,875 in the area and 97,000 across the state.

Emergency crew dispatchers fielded nearly 100 calls across the Valley during the monsoon storm’s initial wave, he said. The night ended with around 200 calls.

Earlier this month, lighting struck a house in Mesa, setting the attic ablaze. The family managed to get out safely and fire crews were able to save the house.

The monsoon pulled many of the departments together – whoever is closet to the emergency responds.

The regional dispatch system handles the calls for multiple cities.

“They do an awesome job,” Gile said.

Despite some parts of the Valley getting more than an inch of rain, first responders only had minor water rescues, “which is great,” Gile said.

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