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Smoke and Mirrors

Here is the evidence that lightning will go where ever it chooses. It started at the electrical outlet and finished up in the plumbing. The aluminum (sorry not silver) in the mirror provided a low impedance (resistance) path to ground.

The first picture is of course simulated but shows what happened.

The second shows where the coating vaporized off the cover plate in line with the neutral wire screw head. There were similar spots at each (2) of the frame mounting screws above and below the receptacle.

Picture 3 shows where the strike jumped from the safety ground and the frame and into the mirror coating. This photo was taken after the electrician rewired the receptacle (but didn’t replace it). There originally was a loop of the bare safety ground wire at the left bottom corner of the opening at the flash point.

The next two pictures show where the strike jumped between the two mirrors. One near the middle and one at the top of the mirrors.

The last photo is the exit point to the real ground of the plumbing system. Yes, we have copper pipes.

Gloria first noticed a LOT of black flakes behind the faucet and all over the counter in this area. Dirt that was never there before. She said, “The lighting hit the sink!” I thought no, couldn’t be. But I was dead wrong. I didn’t see the burns at first but in a few moments of examining the debris on the counter I saw the burn marks. I think I exclaimed something profane or maybe it was about sacred bodily waste! (Holy-Sh**!)

2 comments to Smoke and Mirrors

  • Steve

    Have you replaced the receptacle? I’ll do it for you. 🙂

  • The receptacle is OK. just a little dusty. I am sure the strike was spread on the safety ground wire as well as the power wires. The burns are where the arcs occured to the very thin mirror coating. The voltage was high but the current must have been low. Kind of like a Tesla coil flash. This has been a very interesting experiance. 🙂