Lightning that traveled through underground pipes ignited an air conditioner in a Crofton house Monday, starting a two-alarm fire that damaged the roof, attic and second floor as thunderstorms rolled through the county.
County fire officials said yesterday that the lightning struck a tree near the house in the 1500 block of Ellsworth Ave. shortly after 4 p.m. and traveled through underground pipes and wires to reach the air conditioner.
The electrical fire caused property damage totaling about $235,000, a Fire Department spokesman said. No one was at home at the time, and no injuries were reported.
Officials said the fire was the only major storm-related incident reported Monday. Minor car accidents and downed wires were reported in some parts of the county.
Hanover man arrested on drug charges
County police arrested a Hanover man on drug charges shortly after midnight Monday after he was stopped in the parking lot of Joe Cannon Stadium on Ridge Road.
Officers said Douglas Boxall, 22, was charged with possession of a prescription drug with intent to distribute and drug possession.
Police said they found suspected Valium and Dicyclomine, a prescription drug that acts as a stimulant, during the arrest.
Meeting is tonight on boot camp move
In what may be the last chance for Odenton residents to have a public say on state plans to move the Herman L. Toulson Correctional Boot Camp from Jessup to Fort Meade, the Greater Odenton Improvement Association is sponsoring a meeting tonight.
The meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in the Odenton Fire Hall on Route 175. Several local politicians are scheduled to attend, along with Bishop L. Robinson, the secretary of public safety and correctional services.
Norman G. Myers, president of the improvement association, said the meeting will include an overview of what has become an explosive issue and an update on what has happened since the last meeting, sponsored by Fort Meade in June.
Among the more than 200 people who attended the June meeting were many residents of Seven Oaks, which is across the road from the site of the proposed prison.
If the camp is moved to Fort Meade, state officials say, it would expand from 365 to 500 inmates.
The camp runs a rigorous six-month course aimed at changing attitudes of first- and second-time offenders.
At Fort Meade, it would be located 100 yards south of Route 175 near Route 32.