Man’s home wrecked as freak storm strikes resort

The lightning that struck during the storm in the early hours of Saturday morning. Picture by Nicky Ng.
The lightning that struck during the storm in the early hours of Saturday morning. Picture by Nicky Ng.

A freak lightning strike wrecked a man’s home and caused electrical appliances to explode across Morecambe.

David Tarbun’s home took the brunt of the massive bolt, described as sounding“like a bomb going off”.

The devastating strike blew out nine of his windows, shattered two car windscreens and ripped a hole in the roof and front door.

Thousands of pounds worth of damage was also caused to the 63-year-old’s household appliances.

Mr Tarbun was asleep at his semi-detached home on Lathom Avenue when the bolt hit during a storm in the early hours of Saturday.

He said: “There was an almighty bang.”

“I went to the bedroom window to see what was going on, and there was no glass in it.

“Next thing my next-door neighbour was knocking on my door to ask if I was all right.

“The lightning must have hit the tree outside my house. It’s cracked the front garden wall and put a hole in the pavement.

“My telephone line went through the tree but the line has disintegrated.

“Then the lightning must have spread to the house and smacked the side of the building. There are cracks in the wall.”

Mr Tarbun, a self-employed building surveyor, now has to order repairs and replacements for his property.

“I’ve lost two computers which had work on them, two TVs, digital video recorders and I need a new gas boiler.

“Some of the electrics aren’t working and my car won’t start. “Apart from that, I’m all right!

“It’s one of those things, an act of God, and thankfully I’m insured. But the strike was only about eight feet away from me so it could have been worse.”

The lightning also caused damage to many other homes in Morecambe, Bare and Torrisholme. Modems, satellite dishes and telephone lines were particularly affected.

A resident who lives on nearby Burlington Avenue said: “It sounded like a bomb had gone off outside. It was frightening.

“For a few seconds I had no idea what was going on. I’d never heard anything like it. “There were alarms going off all down the street.

“My youngest son came rushing into our bedroom, trembling.

“I got up in the morning and the phone line was down and the modem was burned out, with a scorch mark on the carpet near the TV. The electrics had tripped out but thankfully weren’t damaged.”

Daniel Williams from the Met Office said: “It was a solitary strike with nothing else anywhere near it. There were very few over the UK that night.

“It may have been caused by a relatively small shower cloud which built up enough charge to generate one strike.

“It’s very rare for one strike to cause such damage. Our experts are very interested in getting more information about it.”

Morecambe fire station said they only had “one or two call outs” for alarms going off.