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The Big Boom!

This is not about how the universe was created. It is about how some matter was destroyed, converted to energy so to speak. A good (true) story for the 4th of July.

You have read about the many disasters Gloria and I have been through in the last several years. You know, “The Great Crash” and then there was “A House Fire (Almost)”. My sprained ankle hardly counts except it has taken a month to heal. The latest to be described here is “The Big Boom!”

It happened about 10:00 AM on Monday June 29, 2009. I was already at work 20 miles away for about 3 ½ hours. At that point in time Gloria called me on my cell phone in a severe panic . A horrendous jolt of lighting and resultant supersonic BOOM had just rocked the house.

I looked outside at my location and there was no sign of rain. I checked the weather on my computer at work and saw in Frisco one of those super cells drifting through north of Dallas and raining at 2 inches per hour or more.

On my cell phone all six fire alarms in the house were screaming in the background. All the electronic music toys for our granddaughter became activated and were singing their songs, non stop. There was a sulfur-electrical smell in the air. Gloria was um… a bit excited!

She called the fire department and they quickly responded. Firemen tramped all through the house and attic areas looking for hot spots. Yes, there definitely was a lighting hit, but where?

I arrived about 11:30 AM. Firemen still here but the rain and most excitement had passed. My home office full of computer and network equipment was totally dead. My amateur radio equipment will turn on the lights and that is it. Even the paper shredder is dead. The $1400 monitor is still good as far as I can test without equipment.

The garage door opener is dead. So is the speed control on my X3 milling machine. The shop computers are OK as they are on a radio link with the network and one was not even plugged in.

Upstairs a panel type night light was blown out of the socket. The down stairs bathroom mirrors have a arc from an outlet cut through the mirror, to that mirror, then it arced across to a second mirror, then arced off that mirror to the sink’s brass plumbing fixtures. If Gloria had been at the sink, she may have been injured or killed.

We have two wireless phone systems and both base units were destroyed.

Gloria WAS upstairs running her sewing machine which went berserk and lost the electronic speed control. The upstairs air conditioning blew up the control board and thermostat and transformer ($1400 in repairs). She was about ten feet from all this action.

We had electricians do a wiring check and they found a point where the house wiring had be hit and caught fire at the peak of the roof. The fiberglass insulation had smothered the fire but there is some charred wood and melted wire insulation. We were lucky.

So far the cost is ~$10,000

Neighbors have reported seeing an extremely bright flash and glowing ball above our house. Another thinks she saw ball lighting hit the ground next door and bounce. Who knows. I do believe it may have been what is called ball lighting.

My amateur radio antennas suffered no visible damage but I currently can not test them. The big base unit TEN-TEC radio was disconnected but still suffered damage from just being in the office. Some of the evidence I see tells me some of the current was carried by the safety grounds and not just the power wires. It makes no difference to lightening.

All the power lines in my neighborhood are buried so the strike did nor enter through the main feed, But the neighborhood did go off the grid for awhile

I had my son Steve go up on the roof (He worked for me in the roofing business) and he could find no damage where the wires burned or anywhere else on the roof. That is why I am inclined to believe it was not a stroke of lighting, but more an explosion of ionized air over the house that created a huge boom and induced a very high EMP into all my wiring a solid state electronics.

The good news is we are all safe but we are beginning to think our home may be built on the top of an Apache burial ground…

4 comments to The Big Boom!

  • ace

    WOW Dan!!!

    thats almost unbelievable if it were not for all the other things that have happened ,very glad to hear that no one got hurt, thats one heck of a story one im sure the local paper would be interested in..

    we dont think much about lightning till it hits home huh…

    again ,glad to hear no one was hurt, and that none of the yungun’s toys were burn up either 🙂

  • I have to go find that target bullseye and paint it white. This stuff better end soon! Geez! ~ Dan’l

  • Holy cow! I didn’t know the whole story. Wowza that’s freaky and scary. I’m so glad Mom’s ok. Too bad all of Tessa’s toys are possessed now… 🙂

  • I swear the eyes on the toys glow at night and follow me around the room in the daytime. Then again, it could be these pills I am taking. They do make me kind of dizzy…

    Even the printers were wiped out. Both Inkjets are dead and not sure about the LaserJet yet. Need a working network server (it’s on order). No parallel port here on the MAC. Just bought an Officejet Pro 8000 inkjet ($145). Nice! New style cartridges and can print 35 ppm both color and B&W.

    Electrical re-work yesterday was over $2200! Ouch!