Lightning safety tips from National Weather Service
A storm with thunder and lightning that moved over the Mid-Columbia late Saturday night and early Sunday morning sparked at least two fires in Benton County.
The worst of the storm hit the Tri-Cities between 11:45 p.m. Saturday and 2 a.m. Sunday, according to the National Weather Service.
About 0.13 inch of rain fell and wind gusts as high as 28 mph were recorded at the Tri-Cities Airport in Pasco.
Benton County Fire District 5 responded with help from West Benton Fire Rescue to one fire south of Prosser that burned about 300 acres of grass, sagebrush and wheat stubble.
The second wildfire was on a slope of the Horse Heaven Hills, and could be seen from Prosser. Heavy rains quickly put the fire out before it could spread.
The storm was worse in Western Washington.
The National Weather Service in Seattle reported 2,200 cloud-to-ground lightning strikes in Northwest Washington from 6 to 11 p.m..
“That works out to an estimated 440 an hour and 7 to 8 a minute,” the weather service said.
The severe weather in Seattle even delayed part of the Washington Huskies football game against the California Golden Bears at Husky Stadium.
More rain is possible in the Tri-Cities this week. A 30 percent chance of showers is forecast for Tuesday night.
As the series of storms moves out of the Mid-Columbia, temperatures will be warming again.
Highs through Wednesday are forecast for the low to mid 70s., but Thursday and Friday they should be back to the 80s, according to the forecast.