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updated: 5/12/2011 4:05 PM

Lightning sparks two fires in Palatine

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A heavy storm that produced multiple lightning strikes, an inch of rain in some areas and scattered reports of hail early Thursday is blamed for igniting two house fires in Palatine.

The fires, reported within seconds of one another at 5:19 a.m., caused minimal damage and no injuries, Palatine officials said

The first was sparked at a two-story house on the 200 block of South Clyde Avenue, where crews, including firefighters from the new Quentin Road firehouse, responded within five minutes, Battalion Chief Patrick Gratzianna said.

A total of 13 firefighters confined the fire mostly to the exterior of the house. Damage was estimated at $15,000.

Palatine officials say a lightening strike also is to blame for a blaze at a home on the 800 block of Fremont Avenue, where crews responded within four minutes. The attic fire caused about $35,000 in damage.

Firefighters from the Palatine Rural Fire Protection District and Arlington Heights Fire Department assisted.

Officials from the National Weather Service said the heaviest rain fell in Kane and northwest Cook counties, while small bits of hail were spotted in Aurora.

More thunderstorms were predicted to move through Thursday night, with temperatures expected to drop significantly the rest of the week.

Staff writer Lee Filas contributed to this report.

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