POSTED: Sunday, May 6, 2012 - 12:00am
UPDATED: Sunday, May 6, 2012 - 12:04am
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — Mother Nature seems to have forgotten the old saying "lightning doesn't strike twice" in one Mason, Ohio neighborhood.
Residents in the Crooked Tree development said whenever a storm pops up; they almost expect to see a bolt in their backyard.
Neighbors said one of the homes in area was destroyed by a direct hit less than a week ago.
At least eight homes have been hit in the past decade.
John Jowett said he bought his home shortly after it was struck in 2005.
He lives on a street behind last week's home.
On stormy nights with electricity in the air, he said it's not easy to sleep.
"Lightning struck right in the middle," Jowett said. "When I saw the house there go up in flames, I mean, those flames were 30-feet high and it just burned to the ground -- that was scary, that was a wakeup call."
Gary Florea lives a few streets over.
He was forced out of his home after lightning torched his place on New Year's Day 2002.
He said his teenage daughter will never be the same.
"Lightning and the accompanying sound scares her to the point that she'll run into our room in great fear. So it's left a permanent scar," Florea said.
A handful of neighbors had lightning rods installed to protect their homes and electronics.
Dozens more said they plan to do the same.
The process can cost about $2,000.
"We call this 'Lightning Alley.' I've been here almost two years and never seen so much lightning. I believe it's a high probability that it could happen again and I'd rather be prepared for it if it does," resident Mike Hershey said.
Hershey's place will be rod ready within a few weeks, but until then, every time it storms, he said he's worried his home could be strike number nine.
Meteorologists said Ohio is in the Top 10 for the most lightning prone states.
Since officials have started keeping records on the matter, nearly 550 people in Ohio have been killed or injured by lightning strikes.