Saturday, February 03, 2018

One flash

It was Wednesday just after lunch. I was sitting at my living room window, reading Twitter on my computer when the hailstones began to fall. 'Wow, they're big', I thought to myself. So I picked up my mobile from the arm of my chair and pressed record, so I could show Thomas, who was in Edinburgh, the storm when he got home.

Within the first ten seconds after I started to film out my window, there was a flash and less than a second later the loudest thunder I have ever heard, including electric storms I've lived through in southern Europe. So shocked, you can see I nearly drop my phone(, while discussing religion with myself!) I continued to film for two more minutes but there was nothing. It was the most violent and the shortest electric storm of my life.

I stopped and pressed upload, but the Internet was down, which it definitely hadn't been less than two minutes earlier. I brought up the available connections, my two router extensions were listed but not the main house router that runs the whole thing... weird.

I went through to the router and no lights were on. Had the one flash blown up my router? I was seriously doubtful. I unplugged it and plugged it in again, nothing. I lifted my phone to ring Sky to report the fault, the phone was dead too. On inspection all my phones were also dead.

I got through to Sky on my mobile, they tested my lines, said they could do nothing and booked me an engineer for Friday. In the meantime, mum, who lives three streets away phoned to tell me neither of her TVs were working. Could one flash really do that?

The engineer arrived on Friday morning, exclaiming he was rushed off his feet as call-outs in my area had increased 10-fold in two days. In fact, he even had three more call-outs in my own street! I showed him the video on my phone (see above). The storm had actually hit my street!!! A house further up now had a tarpaulin on the roof where the one flash of lightning had blown a hole in their roof and unlike us they seemed fairly unconcerned, according to the engineer who had seen them, about the demise of their router. You see, the lightning had melted all the wiring in their house, inside their walls and sockets and of course had blown up everything that had been plugged in - their fridge, cooker, freezer, phones, TVs, computers, you name it. My house was just 100 metres from the strike. How scary is that?

So we're £120 down and Mum's engineer still hasn't been round so I fear her TVs may be fried but I'll update this once we hear.

Update: Final count at mum's was one satellite dish, two Sky receivers, one amplifier!

No comments: