Severe weather causes outages, tree damage, and injuries

7 Vermont firefighters had to be rushed to the hospital

GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Western Massachusetts utility workers are now cleaning up after a storm that rolled through the region earlier Wednesday evening. 22News tracked the aftermath all night.

Heavy rain, strong gusts of wind and lightning. On Wednesday, after a rain storm moved through Franklin County, many families prepared for an evening without electricity.

Strong winds and lightning brought down many trees in Franklin County, and with trees, came down power lines. At one point Wednesday night, more than 4,300 people in all of western Massachusetts were without power.

Marty Garcia of Erving said, “There were just branches, stuff all over the road, and debris all over the road. Wires were running across the road.”

Up and down Route 2, crews from western Massachusetts Electric Company and the National Grid worked all night to restore power.

While Franklin County dealt with damaged trees and power lines, further up north, in Guilford, Vermont, seven firefighters were struck by lightning while working on a house fire that may have started when the house was struck by lightning.

According to Lt. Bevan Quinn of the Guilford Volunteer Fire Department, “We’ve had several lightning strikes right nearby, and several firefighters, two to three times, felt shocks.”

22News spoke with a neighbor who knows the home owner’s son. Chris Pond said, “His mother who lived here I guess went up to my folks’ house and had them call the fire department.”

All seven firefighters were taken to Brattleboro Memorial Hospital. They are expected to be okay. The home owner escaped the fire without any injury but may not be able to return to that house any time soon.

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