Lightning strikes cause two fires

28 Dec 2012

Bad weather is being blamed for two fires in Bournemouth which damaged a school and a hotel.

Lightning may have hit the derelict Cliff End Hotel and Lytchett Minster Upper School causing both buildings to catch alight in the two separate incidents.

More than 55 firefighters were called to put the blaze out, while a spokesman said it was likely the damage was caused by lightning after both started in their roofs.

He said there were no reports of fatalities or injuries, although investigators were not able to enter the buildings at the time.

Both fires were reported in the early morning, during what was described as a "big thunder storm" by the fire service, who are carrying out an investigation into the incidents.

Station commander Dave Arundel, from Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, said: "I spoke to the initial attending officer in charge and he said that on his arrival the fire was out through the roof, which is unusual unless it was a lightning strike."

Copyright Press Association 2012

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