Lightning strikes...


I am sure I don't have to tell any of you how bad a lightning strike can be for you and your electrical equipment.

When thunderstorms approach I keep an eye and an ear out for how close they are getting so I can power everything down and disconnect things from antennas and other potential lightning conduits (phone lines, TV antennas, other antennas, satellite dishes etc. Basically anything on your roof that leads into your house).

I have surge protectors on most things but they are a stop gap, not a fail-safe.

I have spoken to many people who have had gear killed even though supposedly protected by "surge protectors".

This is partly due to failure of the devices and partly due to the confusion over just how much protection any particular device may provide.

We had a dry thunderstorm storm come through our area recently and, as is the need in summer in Australia, I checked the Fire Authority web site to see what fires had been created by lightning strikes....there were a lot.

I know that lightning strikes can be detected and located in real time. It is possible to buy personal lightning detectors.

So I decided to check just how much detail was available online and the results didn't disappoint.

This one is my favourite so fare https://www.lightningmaps.org/

You can customize it a lot and show details such as:

  • detector station locations

  • triangulation data

  • your location

  • expanding circles from strikes showing where the thunder is at that moment

  • and more besides...


This one http://en.blitzortung.org/ provides access to historical data.

So I was able to find the storm in question and show a loop of the lightning strikes across where I live.

I am even going to sign up to "host a sensor" to improve the lightning detection network. Brilliant!

Anyway, all this is in aid of knowing if and when I need to turn off and unplug all my electronics and computers.

Off course detection only happens after the event, so the risk is isn't eliminated and, rather obviously, as the lightning approaches the equipment I'll be using to monitor it will need to be switched off. But that's alright, I can go mobile if I am desperate and I was going to have to turn it off anyway.

Stay safe and enjoy the show!

David

#power #lightning #datalossprevention

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