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Thursday, May 1, 2014

Almost hit by lightning : My own experience

Two days ago just few minutes before 7 p.m. , an unexpected thing happened in our school compound. A lightning struck an old auto gate box then hit the pavement outside of the gate before it traveled to the neighbour's house. I was standing about 1 meter away from the gate and was terrified as I saw the lightning right before my eyes. A small fireball actually came towards me but I managed to crouch my body. It still hit my back. Some debris like huge concrete rocks flew into the compound, I can only remember I screamed on top of my lung and everything went black for few seconds. After that, I got up on my feet and ran into the school building. My kids, nephew and two other kids saw the whole thing and they also screamed as they freaked out. The main fuse box inside the building were burnt off too due to the chain reaction. My helper who was inside the building at that time, said she couldn't do anything else except for hugging my youngest daughter and my nephew who were with her.

When all of us gathered inside, we realized that the power had went off. My helper and I couldn't really think of what to do. I myself had to calm down before I could think straight. All I could do was thinking how lucky I was to be able to escape from any injury. The kids were sobbing as they were traumatized from the incident. My helper gave me a glass of water to calm me down. After drinking some water, I made some calls to my husband telling him about the incident. My husband asked me to call TNB (the power company) and made a report. Then, I also had to call an electrician.

The auto gate wiring box
(It used to have a cover. The whole cover shattered)

The main fuse box

The pavement outside of the gate

TNB electricians came at night but they only fixed their meter box. They said they can't do the wiring job inside the building as it's not part of their job. As we expected, we still need to call an electrician. So, yesterday morning, an electrician came to fix up everything. He dismantle the whole piece of auto gate box, changed the things that need to be changed in the main fuse box and also installed the earth cable. 
There was a lot of things I've learned from this experience. One, when it's quite dark outside and the sun is coming down, we better not standing on an open area and near big trees. Two, always check out if the building you are living in (either your own house or a rented place) has the earthing system. Three, any old wiring even when you already disconnect it can still be a threat when there's lightning. Four, safety must always come first. Even in a panic situation, make sure we try our best to save our life and others who are with us. 

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