Wild storm lights up the Clarence

MORE than 765 lightning strikes were measured within a 50-kilometre radius of Grafton in Thursday night’s storm.

Country Energy’s storm tracker calculated the numerous strikes in the Valley in the 12-hour period, starting from 6pm, among the thousands of strikes which hit the North Coast.

Being in the midst of the notorious storm season, Country Energy is urging people to be extra vigilant and prepared at this time of the year.

Country Energy regional manager Richard Wake said the recent severe weather served as a timely reminder that the dangers associated with storms were real.

“When lightning strikes the electricity network, the damage can be extreme with poles smashed so they resemble toothpicks, transformers and insulators destroyed and bringing powerlines down,” he said.

“While your toaster uses about four amps, the average lightning bolt carries a current of up to 30,000 amps and it can, and often does, strike the same place more than once.”

Mr Wake recommends that homes don’t use electrical appliances or wired telephones during a severe storm and unplug sensitive equipment such as computers and televisions.

In the past fortnight the Clarence Valley has been hit by severe thunderstorms which caused considerable damage, physically and financially.

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