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[TowerTalk] Lightning Observation

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Lightning Observation
From: (Ford Peterson)
Date: Sun, 22 Jul 2001 21:11:22 -0500
I was doing tower work on Saturday and decided to head for the shack because
of cloud-to-cloud lightning.  As I put everything away and was walking to
the house, a bolt of lightning shot overhead east to west.  It was perfectly
still and quiet in the yard.  Simultaneous to the flash (no thunder was
heard), every power line insulator within 1/4 mile (also running east-west)
started to arc over.  It sounded like 15 arc welders going off at once.

What surprised me even more was the length of time after the flash that the
arcing continued.  It must have been well over a second before the power
lines quieted down.  Mother nature can be scary at times.

These power lines are the 69kV 3 phase type with 15" (or there abouts)
insulators.  They run east and west.  My 80 meter dipole runs north/south.
No damage to anything, either here or in the neighborhood.

Is it possible that the three lines were temporarily DC biased by the
lightning?  How do you explain the > 1 second to discharge the lines?

Sounds bizarre to me....


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