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Lightening run thru house out gas line

dbernier01
dbernier01 Member Posts: 1
edited August 2021 in THE MAIN WALL
Remember growing up and your mom said not to take a shower when it’s lightening out!  Well lightening does indeed travel!!

So…..The lightening storm we had Tuesday night hit my neighbors house/back yard - 2 doors down (all semi attached) and the electricity ran thru the cable wires and blew out all our modems and routers and a TV per house and for me one cable outlet was next to the gas pipe exiting the house so it exited and blew holes in the gas pipe.  I did not know this (other then we don’t have any Xfinity services) but my neighbors daughter smelled gas yesterday morning and I called the gas company.  They had to shut the gas into the house off.  Plumber came today for an initial assessment but they don’t stock the pipes. After several calls I found someone who knew what I was talking about (aka replace pipe entering house, pressure test all the insides and if needed replace some and god forbid all the lines which means tearing into drywall, etc).  And, given I am heading out of town on Saturday it won’t get worked on until after I am back.   Oh and I found out my gas lines were not grounded hence that why it happened.  So we have no hot water or stove top for a while.  Good news is the house did not blow up!

Comments

  • Kickstand55
    Kickstand55 Member Posts: 49
    WoW, Lucky! Glad all are safe.
    We hear stories like this or in some similar fashion how lightning strikes near a structure and heads inside to wreak havoc.
    I have a long time friend who grew up in a small town in South West Maine and years after he moved out to pursue life, lightening struck the chimney in his childhood home, traveled through the flue pipe and water lines setting fire to the kitchen. His Dad was living there at the time, and good thing, he was able to call the Fire Dept. in time to save the kitchen. Who wudda thunk that could happen.
    You may or not know about corrugated stainless steel gas piping, maybe you have that, but early on there were many issues with lightening strikes and piping not being bonded to ground via the service panel. There are now gas piping products which are not supposed to be harmed by lightening. I for one don't use them, and am not trying to beat up on the manufacturers, just how I see things.
    Once again, glad all are ok.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,429

    WoW, Lucky! Glad all are safe.....

    This!
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  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,334
    Lightning is wickedly damaging. Something I largely ignored as some other unlucky person's problem in the news. Until I saw what it could do up close.

    My neighbor's satellite dish, mounted on second floor was hit. The dish was grounded to the hose spigot below. Unfortunately, the water pipes were PEX tubing, so, no grounding.

    All electric wiring insulation in house melted. The paint on wrought iron porch rails and on concrete stairs shriveled up. All appliances were destroyed. Small smoldering fire in attic , quickly extinguished by fire department caused roof and smoke damage. And daughter, who was watching TV in bed, on opposite side of wall that dish was mounted to, had to go to ER for observation. Big sun burn on back, temporary hearing loss. The gas line was bonded to the service panel and it survived.

    My gas line wasn't bonded to ground; Neither was my roof antenna - but they are now!

    Respect for lightning. More empathy for people in the news.

  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 12,145
    Chances are that the gas line took a hit from the cable wire and that is the only spot the gas line was damaged. Should be an easy fix, more time will be spent capping the gas line and pressure testing than fixing the leak.

    Metal gas piping is not used for a grounding electrode. It is bonded to (and grounded by) the gas equipment it serves and the electrical grounding connections to that equipment.

    Make sure the cable wire is also bonded to your grounding system
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 5,737
    SlamDunk said:

    Lightning is wickedly damaging. Something I largely ignored as some other unlucky person's problem in the news. Until I saw what it could do up close.

    My neighbor's satellite dish, mounted on second floor was hit. The dish was grounded to the hose spigot below. Unfortunately, the water pipes were PEX tubing, so, no grounding.

    All electric wiring insulation in house melted. The paint on wrought iron porch rails and on concrete stairs shriveled up. All appliances were destroyed. Small smoldering fire in attic , quickly extinguished by fire department caused roof and smoke damage. And daughter, who was watching TV in bed, on opposite side of wall that dish was mounted to, had to go to ER for observation. Big sun burn on back, temporary hearing loss. The gas line was bonded to the service panel and it survived.

    My gas line wasn't bonded to ground; Neither was my roof antenna - but they are now!

    Respect for lightning. More empathy for people in the news.

    Bonding wouldn't have saved you from that type of near strike. It may have helped some, but many of those things were just from the current induced in metal objects nearby from the electromagnetic field from the strike. The only way it may have stopped it is if it caused the charge to discharge slowly instead of discharging in a lighting strike.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,070
    The only experience I have with lightning so far luckily, was my parents cabin was hit a long time ago.

    We believe, the tv antenna was hit and from what I recall, it destroyed the smoke detector which was AC powered, a GFCI receptacle on the same circuit as the tv and a wireless telephone that wasn't plugged in.

    The TV I took apart and it's the only time I've ever seen that......on anything...
    It was an older CRT tv and it had a very large PCB across the entire bottom. The plastic bottom of the tv was copper plated and the PCB had no copper on it anymore. Most of the solder was there, but the traces were literally gone. From what I remember, the components appeared fine as well, at least physically. I doubt they were actually ok though.

    Based on that.........I think if you (Your house etc) get hit, it's going to be a bad day.

    Lightning rods, and grounding for lightning etc is all over my head though.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lightning_rod
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  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,334
    edited August 2021
    @ChrisJ said: Based on that.........I think if you (Your house etc) get hit, it's going to be a bad day.

    Lightning rods, and grounding for lightning etc is all over my head though.

    A bad day is right!

    I researched lightning protection until I was nauseous and the understanding I came to was that any positive charge in the air will be dissipated, quietly and without drama, to ground via lighting rod and ground conductor thus preventing a lightning strike. Is it true? I don't know. Probably.

    Aircraft have trailing static wicks on wings and tail to dissipate any electrical charge built up in flight. These are to prevent control surfaces from arcing and getting welded into position.