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UPDATE: The phone lines are currently down as of 7:16 p.m. Members of the Viewpoints staff noticed that there was not a dial tone on the newsroom phones. Staff members also called several campus related phone numbers including the main office number for the Riverside City College campus, only to hear a busy tone.
Lightning struck a palm tree on campus at Terracina Drive between the Wheelock Gym and the Art Building at 4:30 p.m. The palm tree ignited immediately, but was quickly drenched by the pouring rain.
By the time the firemen had arrived at 4:43 p.m. the tree was predominantly extinguished by the rain.
The rainstorm stopped at 4:50 p.m. as firemen left the scene several minutes after.