Lightning Strike in Ohio Sparks Steeple Fire

April 6, 2012

The Toledo Catholic Diocese says a lightning strike sparked a fire to a 170-foot steeple at a church in northeast Ohio.

Firefighters tell WTOL-TV most damage from the Tuesday morning fire at St. Rose Catholic Church in Perrysburg was contained to the steeple, with minor damage to the sanctuary. No one was hurt, and damage is estimated at $200,000.

Perrysburg Fire Chief Jeff Klein says firefighters could not go inside the steeple because the shape of its bells could trap them, so they worked to extinguish the fire from outside. It was under control in about an hour.

The parish opened in 1892, and has about 8,000 members. It was recently renovated.

Masses and confessions for Tuesday and Wednesday were moved to the gym of the neighboring church school.

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