London saw fallen trees, homes without power, and flooding after an overnight storm on June 23rd. White Oaks Mall and Argyle Mall had to close some businesses from the storm. There were many intersections that had to be treated as four-way stops, because the traffic lights were out.
London Fire Department Spokesperson Rick Jefferson said they saw many false alarm cases, as a result of the storm. “Electrical surges through people’s power lines will set off alarm systems, and basically we have to respond to them because we don’t know if it’s a false alarm or not,” he said. He added single trucks were sent to each situation.
“Normally, we would be sending four or five trucks to an alarm, but they were spread very thin because so many alarms were actually coming in.”
Fire Crews responded to a fire caused by lightning at 155 Somerset Crescent. Jefferson said the lightning hit the home’s roof, and fire crews had to take down some of the interior to find an attic fire. No one was injured, and damage is estimated at $75,000.
13 Southwest London homes, in Gabor Court, were evacuated for several hours because of a natural gas leak on June 23rd. Fire crews responded to reports of a gas leak at 9:20 a.m. One of the homes had explosive levels of gas. While it hasn’t been confirmed that the storm caused the gas leak, Jefferson said lightning likely broke the gas line.
“It’s not common that you find explosive levels of gas in the air, and we did have them to the point where somebody could have been badly hurt if there’d been a spark or a small fire in the are of the gas leak.”
Fire crews stood for at least three hours before Union Gas fixed the leak. Although city crews are cleaning up the damage, Jefferson said the Fire Department only responds to immediate situations caused by the storm.