Meshoppen Home Hit By Lightning
By David Keeler
Meshoppen’s Shannon Hill residents Bob and Ruth Dunlap are hoping that old expression—about lightning not striking the same place twice—is true. Monday afternoon the Dunlaps’ house along Frantz Road took strike one and the Dunlaps are hoping that’s it.
The lightning strike set the house on fire but some quick action by Ruth, who manned a garden hose and had the fire pretty much out before firefighters arrived, prevented more damage.
Ruth’s lucky she could even move. When lightning hit, she was holding the TV remote and it was knocked out of her hand. “There was a ball of fire,” Bob Dunlap recalls.
Bob says the lightning blew out their TV and some other electronics, but the lights in the house still worked. The Dunlaps have lived in the home over 40 years, but this was the first time it’s been hit by lightning.
Workers at nearby Meshoppen Stone spotted smoke from the burning home and called the fire company. For a time it was suspected there were two fires burning, but someone saw smoke from the Dunlap fire that had drifted to another area and mistakenly thought something else was burning.
Meshoppen Fire Chief Bob Carney said the lightning traveled down the home’s electric service and then traveled along eaves. Damage to the home appeared to be minor.
Along with Meshoppen firefighters, Laceyville’s Goodwill Fire Company responded to the scene, and Wyalusing was placed on standby at the Laceyville Fire Hall.