A family of four has been made homeless after their house was struck by lightning.
Fire crews were called to Keswick Avenue, Holland-on-Sea, at 4.25am today, to reports of two bungalows on fire.
One of the homes was alight, while the second was heavily smoke logged.
Firefighters using breathing apparatus had put the fire out by 6.40am.
Essex County Fire and Rescue Service was also called to a second incident in Clacton Road, Elmstead Market, at 6.10am, when a garage caught fire.
Crews worked quickly to douse the flames before the fire spread to the adjoining house, and had dealt with the incident by 7am,