A lightning strike started a fire yesterday that destroyed a strip shopping plaza near the University of Toledo as a line of thunderstorms swept across northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan causing 10,000 customers to lose power, authorities said.

The plaza at 1205 Westwood Ave., just south of Dorr Street, housed a seasonal location of the tax service franchise, H&R Block, the clothing retailer, L.A. Collections, and the yet-to-open Wings Express restaurant.

Shoppers and employees inside the retailer heard a loud bang as lightning hit the structure about 4:30 p.m., Assistant Fire Chief Luis Santiago said. Those inside rushed out to see smoke and flames. No one was hurt.

As firefighters battled the blaze, the single-story structure's roof collapsed.

Fire crews last night supervised the demolition of the building purchased in 2005 by Ben Sayed, of East Toledo. It was worth about $190,000, according to county records.

The storm packed wind gusts of about 60 mph, downing about 10 utility poles along Lallendorf Road between Starr Avenue and Seaman Street in Oregon as well as power lines and trees throughout the region.

Hail, ranging in size from a quarter-inch in Napoleon to an inch in Maumee, pounded other areas as well, including locations in Hancock, Putnam, Seneca, and Wood counties, according to the National Weather Service.

The storm briefly interrupted a Toledo City Council committee meeting about 4 p.m. when a revolving door at Government Center in downtown Toledo was shattered by strong winds.

Broken glass was strewn across the lobby as security guards fought to prevent the remaining sections of the door from being destroyed.

Power was restored by 6 p.m. to about half of the 10,000 Toledo Edison customers without service, Richard Wilkins, a spokesman for the utility, said. Most of the outages were in East Toledo and Oregon.

About 4,600 customers east of Toledo and about 750 in Maumee remained without service last night. In Michigan's Hillsdale County, 96 Consumers Energy customers were without power, spokesman Dan Bishop said.

No significant outages were reported in Monroe or Lenawee counties. About 50,000 customers were without power in the Detroit area, a spokesman for Detroit Edison said.

More thunderstorms are likely today and through the weekend, the weather service said.