N.S. church catches fire during lightning storm


A strike of lightning seems to have caused a church to catch fire on Nova Scotia's South Shore Friday morning.

Nova Scotia RCMP say they received a call around 8:40 a.m. on July 9, of a fire at St. Matthew’s United Church in Clyde River, N.S.

Police say witnesses told them that the church’s steeple was struck by lightning.

Witnesses also say a piece of the church disintegrated and was in the middle of Highway 103.

 Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the steeple portion of the building.

Shelburne Fire Department Chief Darrell Locke says a passing storm is the suspected cause.

"There was heavy weather in the area at the time and obviously the fire was in the very tip of the steeple and there was nobody in the building at the time," says Locke.

"I would think that we can confirm that it was a lightning strike."

Chief Locke says the main structure was saved from the fire but the lower section of the building suffered significant water damage.