Lightning hits Coffs

RESIDENTS of Seabreeze Place, Boambee East, were in for a shock on Monday night when the storm that appeared to be over sent lightning through the street.

“It was all over before anyone knew it,” local Steve Bolin said.

“It was just like an explosion. All you could smell was acid.”

Mr Bolin's house suffered damage to the phones and computers. And his son, Andrew, received a minor zap on his hand where he was holding the mouse to the computer.

Further up the street, Toni and Tony Nyssen were lucky; their surge protectors wore the brunt of the power surge.

“It saved the computer, printer and fax,” Mrs Nyssen said.

The surge protector is now burnt out, but the computer and fax are still working.

“There was no gap between the thunder and the lightning,” another resident, Lance Gilbert said.

Mr Gilbert's son, Glen, was also using the computer at the time of the strike.

“A big fireball roared out the front of the computer at him,” Mr Gilbert said. Mr Gilbert added it took them all by surprise as it was 'dead calm' before the strike.

“It was so quick,” local Eleanor Wotherspoon said.

Mrs Wotherspoon was lifted from her chair with fright as a large flash of light came through the front window near her TV.

Country Energy have reported that 1300 customers were impacted with blackouts in the Woolgoolga area when vegetation came into contact with the lines around 7pm. Crews isolated the causes of problem and restored power by 7.30pm.

Storm Tips

  • Don't use a landline phone, unless there is a genuine emergency (this also applies to electrical equipment connected to a phone line such as computers or faxes).
  • When outdoors during a storm, only use a handheld mobile phone if you are in a metal roofed car and the phone is not on a charger, not connected to an external aerial or you use it hands free.

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