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Lightning sparks dozens of fires, downing trees and utility poles

September 11, 2011 |  9:50 am

Viewer rananthony04 captured a lightning bolt over Pinon Hills Saturday. (KTLA-TV / Sept. 10, 2011)

Saturday's unusual rain storms brought lightning that sparked more than 50 fires in Kern County alone, keeping firefighters busy.

Firefighters also responded to numerous lightning-caused fires in Orange County and the Inland Empire. In Westminster, Los Alamitos and Stanton, the strikes downed power lines, felled trees, set utility poles on fire and sparked small blazes in backyards.

"It went through and did a pretty good number on us," Orange County Fire Capt. Marc Stone said.

Lightning sparked a handful of fires around Los Angeles — most of them smoldering trees and rooftops that went out by the time firefighters arrived, said Brian Humphrey, a spokesman for the city's fire department.

The storm moved out Saturday evening.

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-- Tony Barboza and Sam Quinones

Photo: Lightning in the Antelope Valley on Saturday. Credit: KTLA News

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