News

Quick as a flash, I learnt vital lesson as lightning struck

I'LL never again be blase about the dangers of storms and lightning.

From now on, I'll follow to the letter any warnings broadcast by emergency services during storm alerts.

Almost two months after a direct lightning strike on my family home, we're still "picking up the pieces" and discovering damage that had gone unnoticed.

The drama began on November 17 when a "super cell" storm hovered over Brisbane and Ipswich.

Torrential rain and heavy thunder preceded the actual strike, which created a dramatic fireworks display on our back veranda.

If you've seen wizards working terror-inducing magic with their wands in movies, you'll have an idea of the special effects that accompanied this particular lightning strike.

The damages bill ran into thousands, and is growing.

Half of the powerpoints in the house had to be repaired, along with the TV, computer and metres of electrical wiring.

The lightning's powerful sting is also likely responsible for the death of a large gum tree.

Lightning is known to spark grassfires, ignite ceiling blazes and, more tragically, kill people.

After my firsthand experience, all I can advise is for people to pay close attention to storm warnings. Don't ever think, "it won't happen to me".

I hope lightning truly doesn't strike twice in the same place.

Take a few easy precautions during storms:

 Trim trees, remove overhanging branches and clear gutters and downpipes, clear yard of loose materials and rubbish.

 Secure loose roof tiles or sheets.

 Protect sky lights with wire mesh and fit glass windows and doors with shutters or insect screens.

 Prepare an emergency kit - emergency phone numbers, portable radio, torch, spare batteries, first aid kit, strong plastic bags for clothing, valuables, and plastic sheets, timber strips, hammers and nails for temporary repairs.

 Check home insurance is current and adequate.

 Disconnect all electrical items, external TV/radio aerials and computer modems.

 Don't use a fixed phone during a severe storm due to lightning danger.


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Same-sex marriage vote 'pointless' says researcher

“They need to give MPs a conscience vote and just get it done.''

Cyclists, walkers face long magpie dive-bombing season

WATCH OUT: Magpie swooping season is here again. Photo: Scottie Simmonds/NewsMail

119 swoops already recorded this year in Queensland

Pauline Hanson: "I don't hate Asians, Muslims"

Pauline Hanson

One Nation leader carries Koran in her bag 'for reference'

Latest deals and offers

Ipswich man's $701,000 mortgage-killing win

DON'T say it could never happen to you - the extremely lucky winner of this week's first division Golden Casket prize hails from Ipswich.

Granddaughter to face court over man's alleged murder

CHARGES: Murdered Adelaide man Robert Whitwell.

She is one of two women charged with 81-year-old's murder

Jo-Ann Miller speech leaves ALP faithful stunned

STILL STRONG: Member for Bundamba Jo-Ann Miller MP at her Goodna office.

MP sticks to her guns at closed Labor conference

Woman, 22, has died from injuries after Underwood crash

A Police Forensic Crash Unit vehicle at the scene of a serious crash, Saturday, December 06, 2014. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle

Two-vehicle crash occurred at Kingston and Compton rds

Where the sinkhole water came from

The Basin Pocket sinkhole was drained into  gully.

The lab results are in

Court hears evidence of drug deal that led to stabbing

CRIME SCENE: Forensic police officers investigate a fatal stabbing on Cobalt St in Carole Park.

Witness tells court stabbing victim wanted drug money to pay rent

Die-hard fan's 34 magic Gympie Muster years

STICK AROUND FOR A BEER: Mal Williams has been at every Gympie Muster for 34 years.

Mal Williams has only missed one Muster in 35 years - the first one

Diva's sister on soliciting charge

FILE - In this May 14, 2016 file photo, Mariah Carey attends the 27th Annual GLAAD Media Awards, in New York. Carey will appear on the Oct. 5 episode of the Fox series, \"Empire,\" the network confirmed Monday at a TV critics bi-annual press tour. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)

Mariah Carey's sister has been arrested on charges of prostitution.

Tom Cruise private jets his gym kit around the world

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise charters private to take his gym kit around the world

Movie behind Depp and Heard split to be released

Soon you'll be able to see the movie that ended the marriage

Bindi's boyfriend helps release huge croc

Chandler (far right) helped the jump team.

Chandler Powell helps catch Duncan the croc

Mick Jagger to pay £2.5m to the woman carrying his baby

Mick Jagger is reportedly paying millions to pregnant ballerina

Navy man Keller ready to marry a perfect stranger

Former Navy engineer Keller is a participant in season three of Married At First Sight.

Tattoos are just the surface of Married At First Sight groom.

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

$100m plan for Curtis Island 'world class' luxury resort

$100 million resort: Top views at Turtle Street at Curtis Island.

"At the moment we think it meets all the town planning approvals.”

Noosa mayor on "red alert" over planning court decision

Mayor Tony Wellington hands down his first budget.

Mayor upset at lack of say about look and feel of Noosa