Scattered storms brought hail and lightning to some parts of the state on Tuesday, with lightning sparking a fire in one community and damaging a business in another.
Tim Duda, meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Caribou, said Wednesday that storms across Aroostook County brought heavy rain that changed to hail in some places. Thunder and lightning continued into the late evening, although there were no reports of damages.
“We got a report of one-inch-sized hail from an employee here at the National Weather Service just after 4:30 p.m.,” he said. “That was the
only report we received, so it seemed concentrated in that area.”
Lightning from these storms also took a toll in other parts of the state Tuesday.
An Osprey Lane home in Cushing was destroyed after a lightning strike sparked a fire, according to the Courier-Gazette. The house was occupied at the time, but no one was hurt, according to the fire chief.
Around the same time, lightning also struck a business in Thomaston, hitting the chimney before travelling to an electrical box, according to the Courier-Gazette. That strike didn’t spark a fire.
Late July and August is when meteorologists say more thunderstorms and damaging hail appear, according to the NWS. A tornado that touched down in the area on July 18, 2016 brought 1-inch diameter hail to New Sweden and Caswell. Several Aroostook County towns, including Van Buren, Grand Isle, St. Agatha and St. Francis, saw golf-ball-sized hail in Aug. 2008 that left dents and dings in vehicles.
Duda said that he does not expect the skies to brighten permanently any time soon.
“We likely will see showers and thunderstorms throughout the rest of the week and into the weekend,” he said. “That could last until Monday, and then drier weather is predicted. That should bring some relief to people.”
Light rain and scattered thunderstorms also are scheduled to last into the weekend for parts of southern Maine and the western mountain region, according to the National Weather Service in Gray.
BDN writer Nick McCrea contributed reporting.