High Temperatures Fuel Storms

By Martin Weil
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, June 8, 2008

Powerful thunderstorms, created in part by yesterday's heat, ripped across the Washington region again last night, knocking out power to tens of thousands of homes just as electricity had been restored in most places.

The storms, which brought rain, hail and high winds from Loudoun County to Anne Arundel County, were also blamed for lightning strikes that damaged half a dozen houses.

In Bethesda, lightning might have touched off a house fire last night in the 5800 block of Conway Road, said Pete Piringer, spokesman for the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service. Piringer said lightning damaged houses in Damascus, Laytonsville and Germantown, and apparently on Cannon Road in Colesville.

In Fairfax County, lightning was blamed for a house fire on Bridle Wood Drive in Springfield, according to a fire department dispatcher.

As of 10:30 p.m., Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. reported 30,000 homes and businesses in the dark, 20,000 in Anne Arundel and 8,000 in Howard County. Pepco listed almost 18,000 and Dominion Virginia Power reported more than 18,000.

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