Residents say lightning sparked apartment fire near Disney World

Neighbor taking selfie video captures lightning striking Buena Vista Place Apartments


WINDERMERE, Fla. – Lightning is believed to have sparked an apartment fire Friday night near Walt Disney World that left several families spending the night somewhere else.

[RELATED: Apartment fire leaves families homeless]

Orange County Fire Rescue dispatchers said the fire happened at 8:45 p.m. at the Buena Vista Place Apartments off Reams Road.

Wanda Fanador, who lives on the first floor of the building, told Local 6 she heard a loud explosion and smelled smoke soon afterward.

"I just moved here, and everything that I own is gone," she said.

She said two children, who were being cared for by their older brother while their mother was working, were at home on the top floor of the building when she believes lightning hit. The children told Local 6 they were shaken up, but everyone was OK.

No one was hurt in the fire.


Jesus Garcia believes he captured the lightning hitting the building on his cellphone. He showed Local 6 the video, where he's seen shooting a selfie-style video showing off the lightning flashing in the background.

A loud explosion could then be heard, a white flash is seen and Garcia is heard dropping the phone.

"Everything caught on fire," he said. "I saw the firefighters coming out, too. I feel sorry for those people because it could happen to me."

The Florida Fire Marshals Office will be at the apartment complex Saturday to determine the cause of the fire.


About the Author: