Lightning causes more than 20 fires in the Rogue Valley

, Written by Roma Villavicencio, Posted: Tue, July 22 2014 at 11:13 PM, Updated: Wed, July 23 2014 at 4:45 PM

Jacksonville, Ore.--  Cindy Furrow experienced first-hand what a lightning storm can do a tree in her backyard took a direct hit.

"It was too close to my house. Glad I was home when it happened," said Furrow.

This was only one of nearly two dozen small fires caused by lightning Tuesday afternoon in the biggest storm the Rogue Valley has seen this year.

The action kept fire crews on their toes.

"We've been on five calls today and there's been more then we can keep track of as far as smoke investigations in neighboring areas," said Jacksonville Fireman , Brian Barrett.

The storm also brought hail to Talent and flooding to Ashland.

 "The lightning struck all over us and then the rain... a torrential down pour," said Jared Johnson.

Both the Oregon Department of Forestry and Jacksonville fire had hands on deck. Firefighter, Brian Barrett said they even got volunteers. Men and women knowing how much damage lightning  can do, the potential for wildfire.

"We just want to get the fire out and under control before in makes its way up in the canopy and into peoples houses," said Barrett.

ODF had reconnaissance crews out earlier this evening looking for fires in the air but they pulled them in at dark.


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About the Author

Roma Villavicencio

NBC5 News reporter Roma Villavicencio comes from Southern California where she reported for Garden Grove TV Channel 3.

She is a graduate of the journalism/communications program at Cal State Fullerton.

Roma is very proud of her Mexican heritage. She is bi-lingual and looks forward to serving our Hispanic community.

She loves food, music and the San Francisco Giants. She lives by the slogan “viva la vida!”

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