Saturday August 4, 2012

ROWE, Mass. (AP) -- Fire believed to be caused by a lightning strike has severely damaged an elementary school in western Massachusetts.

The fire broke out at the Rowe Elementary School in the Franklin county town around 4:30 p.m. Saturday. There were heavy rain and thunderstorms in the area at the time.

The National Weather Service says the fire was likely started by a lightning strike. Firefighters from several companies responded and put out the flames.

A nearby resident tells WCVB-TV that the fire engulfed the school's roof.

According to the school district's website, about 60 students attend Rowe Elementary.