An overnight fire near Pottsboro Sunday evening may have been sparked by a lighting strike, emergency officials said. The fire, which occurred in the 2600 block of Tanglewood Boulevard shortly after 10 p.m. Sunday, destroyed a residential home that was under construction, Preston Volunteer Emergency Services President Mike Davis said.
The exact cause of the fire has yet to determined and is still being investigated by the fire marshal, Davis explained. However, there was heavy lightning ongoing at the time, he said.
“There was a lot of cloud to ground lightning flashes, and thunder at the time of the fire,” he said. “But it is rare. Lightning strikes causing a house fire is very rare.”
In addition to PVES, six other fire departments, including Sherman Fire-Rescue, Pottsboro Fire Department, Gunter Fire Department and Whitesboro Fire Department, responded to calls for assistance. Davis said he was uncertain of the full extent of the damage, but believes it could be a total loss.
Beyond the fire, Davis said the damage from Sunday’s storms seemed light and mostly restricted to downed tree limbs. Grayson County Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Sarah Somers said this held true for the rest of the county and that she had not received any reports of major damage.
However, Somers said a lightning strike may have caused some issues early Monday morning at the Grayson County Courthouse. Somers said an external air conditioning component was struck by lightning in the storm and caused issues in the courthouse early Monday morning.
Somers said the storms also resulted in spotty power outages across Grayson County. The outages were relatively minor in scope, however they did leave some residents without air conditioning during the peak of the Texas summer, Somers said.
By mid-afternoon Monday, less than 150 customers in Grayson County were without power, according to the Oncor Electric outage map. The majority of these outages were expected to be resolved by midnight Monday. In Fannin County, more than 300 outages were reported and ongoing with Oncor.
In the city of Sherman, damage also appeared to be light following Sunday’s storms, Sherman Fire-Rescue Division Chief Thomas Brown said. Throughout the storm, the department received reports of electrical lines sparking and arcing due to the winds. However, the only report of storm damage came out of the 600 block of Hazelwood, he said.
Brown said first responders received a call of a lightning strike to a home that is believed to have shorted out a hot water heater. However, the strike did not cause a fire, and damage appeared to be minimal.
Rainfall from Sunday’s storms varied across the region with some areas receiving nearly an inch and others reporting two inches or more, National Weather Service Meteorologist Steve Fano said Monday. On the Grayson County OEM website, residents reported up to 4.5 inches of rainfall from Sunday’s storms.
“That was pretty standard for North Texas,” Fano said. “Some saw heavy rain while others did not.”
Fano said the heaviest weather occurred to the east in Fannin and Lamar counties, where residents recorded wind gusts of 65 mph and 62 mph, respectively.
Locally, Fano said 2.1 inches of rainfall was recorded near the Sherman Water Treatment plant and one inch of rainfall was recorded southeast of Denison.
Looking at the rest of the week, Fano said the chances for rain remained low until Friday and Saturday, when the chances for scattered storms are expected to increase. Fano said temperatures leading up to the weekend are expected to climb into the high 90s with the heat index peaking at over 100 degrees.
“Any time you get this kind of rain, it is typically a good thing,” Fano said. “This is typically one of the driest and hottest parts of the year.”