Lightning damages plane and several homes overnight
A line of thunderstorms with heavy lightning is believed to be the cause of several house fires and damage to an airport passenger plane.
Officials at Indianapolis International Airport say a lightning strike caused damage to a US Airways plane around 2:30 Wednesday morning.
The plane was at the ramp of gate B-14 when lightning struck the pavement, but no one was onboard at the time.
Investigators are not sure if the lighting struck the plane and went through to the pavement or if it struck the pavement and sent debris into the air, damaging the plane.
House Fires Started by Lightning
Earlier in the morning, lightning also caused damaged to homes north of Indianapolis.
Firefighters responded to at least three homes in Hamilton County where fires started as storms moved through. One of the fires was reported in a neighborhood on Sutton Place, near 116th Street and Towne Road in Carmel.
Two other fires were reported in Fishers - one on Woods Edge Drive, the other on Laurel Falls Lane. On Woods Edge Drive, homeowners heard the crash of lightning and found fire in an attic over an upstairs bedroom. No one was injured at that location.
All three fires reported in Hamilton County were described as "small" by dispatchers.
The Town of Zionsville also reported on Twitter that there was a house fire started by lightning on Huntington Woods Drive. That fire was marked under control a short time later.
There are no reports of injuries or damage estimates at this time.
At 2 a.m., about 1,800 IPL customers were without power in Marion County. More than 1,500 of those were located downtown and on the east side of Indianapolis.
Duke Energy reported more than 200 customers without electricity, including nearly 100 in Howard County.
History of hail
The storms have a history of producing thunderstorm warnings for large hail, but no watches or warnings were in effect as midnight passed.
The storms stretch from north of Muncie back to the southwest to Terre Haute and have been moving east at speeds of 25-40 mph.
A storm with golf-ball sized hail led to a severe thunderstorm warning for Clay, Greene and Owen counties in west central Indiana. Hail as large as 1.75" in diameter was reported in Coalmont in Clay County, as well as parts of Knox and Vigo counties. Quarter-inch hail was reported in Franklin.
Storms with large hail also triggered warnings in Knox, Daviess and Monroe counties earlier Tuesday night.
Indianapolis set a single-day rainfall record for April 16 on Tuesday with 2.08" of rain in the city. The old record was 1.53" set in 1930.
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