Storm advisory issued; lightning likely cause of house, car fires

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The National Weather Service has issued a hazardous weather advisory for the Pittsburgh area and a flood advisory for Washington County as rounds of thunderstorms continue to rumble through the area today.

The weather service in Pittsburgh said the storms could produce heavy rainfall of 1 to 2 inches an hour into the evening and that isolated flooding may occurred.

The hazardous weather advisory covers Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Washington and Westmoreland counties in the Greater Pittsburgh area. The flood advisory is through 11:30 a.m.

In Allegheny County, flooding has closed Route 837 at the underpass at the Duquesne-McKeesport Bridge and closed Streets Run Road in Baldwin to the city line, according to county officials.

Investigators believe lightning strikes from intense early morning storms may have caused a house and a van to catch fire.

Emergency officials said the house was struck about 3:55 a.m. in Mount Oliver. Firefighters arrived to find smoke, but no open flames and quickly brought that situation under control.

About the same time, a van was reportedly on fire after a lightning strike in Carrick. The van was parked in front of its owner’s home and suffered major damage before crews could extinguish the fire.

Nobody was hurt in either incident.

The same line of storms dropped up to 3 inches of rain on parts of Ohio before moving through the Pittsburgh area this morning.

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