Lightning strike in Wellington leaves group of roofers injured

Woman falls off roof, suffers burns

By Janine Stanwood - Anchor/Reporter, Andrea Torres - Digital Reporter/Producer

WELLINGTON, Fla. - Esteban Rubio said he has been repairing roofs for more than three decades. He thought a roof in a Wellington subdivision Tuesday was going to be his last. 

Rubio was one of the workers standing on the roof of the Shaker Wood development at 11988 Shakerwood Lane in Wellington Hills when lighting struck. He said he had never seen anything like it. 

Ali Vals, an apartment building resident, said he saw a woman fall off the roof after the lighting struck. He saw her fall two stories and ran out to help her. 

"She was unconscious and everything was like burned," Vals said. 

Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office deputies said she took a direct hit when a storm developed without warning. She was standing next to an air conditioning unit. A man was also injured when he fell off a ladder. His head hit the pavement.

The two were in critical condition Tuesday night at the West Palm Beach hospital, according to Palm Beach County Fire Rescue. Paramedics treated four others injured at the scene. 

"It is scary," Rubio said. "In one second, your life is over."

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