Credit: Photo from Pete Piringer via Twitter

Dozens were displaced after lightning struck a residential building in Germantown on Tuesday during a severe thunderstorm, according to a Montgomery County Fire & Rescue official.

Fire and Rescue spokesman Pete Piringer posted on Twitter at 5:15 p.m. that lightning struck the attic of a three-story residential building on Millhaven Place in Germantown, causing a large fire and a partial structure collapse. Dozens of people were displaced in the fire and several were injured, he wrote in another post.

Twelve condominium units had “significant damage,” Piringer posted.


Piringer said in an interview on Tuesday night that the fire started in the attic and burned down onto the third floor.

The roof practically burned off, he said, and part of the third floor collapsed. There was also “significant water and smoke damage to the building,” he said.

Piringer said he doesn’t think any of the injuries were serious, and no one had been taken to the hospital as of Tuesday evening.


Piringer said in a video he posted online that about 100 firefighters responded to the scene. They rescued a cat from the third floor, and several other pets, he said.

Dan Schere can be reached at