Lightning forced a local family from their home after it struck the house and started a small fire. It could happen to any of us.
The lightning struck about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at a home near Rockrimmon and Vindicator. That's on the northwest side of Colorado Springs. The homeowner's son was there when the lightning struck.
Chris Erzen said he was inside his house when it got hit. He told 11 News it was very scary and said it was unlike anything he's ever experienced before.
"It sounded like a cannon went off in my backyard," Erzen said.
Erzen showed us where firefighters say lightning hit his home. The lightning likely first hit the gutters, then traveled down the post, while simultaneously traveling across some wires to their satellite dish. It even blew some lights on the side of the house out of their sockets.
"All of a sudden the whole house lights up...and we just see, I see specifically, this pink intense energy from the lightning, like, hit the corner of the house," Erzen said.
He said a small fire was started near the satellite dish, but he was able to quickly put it out before firefighters got there.
"We were kind of scared [chuckles] like really scared. We were like, ‘what just happened? Are you okay? Are you okay?" Erzen recalled.
He said no one was hurt, but there was a bird in a nearby tree that was knocked down and killed.
Erzen and his mother were forced to find another place to stay Wednesday night, due to the lightning knocking the power out.
Over the years we've all heard this advice: don't use the phone, don't take a bath or shower during a lightning storm. We double-checked that information. Those warnings are true--and there's more. Some of the things firefighters advise not doing during lightning storms may surprise you.
Firefighters say that during a lightning storm, don't lie on concrete floors or lean on concrete walls because of the metal wires or bars in them, and don't use your home computer when there is lightning. If you ate a meal before the storm started, save those dirty dishes for later--firefighters told us not to wash dishes in the sink while there's lightning.
Firefighters even say not to use any plumbing--including the toilet--during a storm.
Cell phones, by the way, are fine.