Lightning strike sparks fire at popular Long Island summer camp

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Kristin Thorne has the latest on the damaging lightning strike on Long Island. (Melville Volunteer Fire Department)

Several buildings at a popular summer camp on Long Island caught fire from a lightning strike on Tuesday night.

The lightning ripped through three buildings at USDAN Summer Camp for the Arts around 7 p.m.

The camp in Wheatley Heights is located in a deeply-wooded area.

Executive Director Lauren Brandt Schloss said that the lightning strike may have caused the transformer on the property to break down about an hour before the fire.

Two contractors were on-site assessing the damage of the transformer when they noticed the fire.

Two sculpture buildings and restrooms were destroyed.

One firefighter was taken to the hospital with heat exhaustion as was a USDAN employee who had smoke inhalation.

All camp sessions ended last Friday, and no children were on the property.

"Honestly, we're just very grateful to the emergency response team and to the community," Schloss said. "There was a huge outpouring of concern last night and support for whatever people can do to help."

Schloss said the buildings will be fully repaired for the 2019 camp season.

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