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Old 28-03-2011, 16:08   #1
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Question about Lightning

I'm about to experience a storm that has produced 2500 lighting strikes in the last hour. It's about 30 minutes away. The radar image is intimidating.

I'm on the boat with my motorcycle in the parking lot, so no where to go easily.

This is a first for me on the water, but not usually concerned about lighting.

Should I disconnect dock power?

Any ideas I can be proactive with? Just ride it out maybe?

thanks.

I realize I'm creating an outlet for snarky remarks, so go for it, I can take it.
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:18   #2
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Re: question about lightning

Well, by now it is all over most probably. Simply put I would make sure the boat is secured well, no loose canvas that the gusts from the storm can grab and then go ashore and have a few drinks in the local bar. When it is all over, you can ride your bike back to where the boat is and see if it is still there and not "smokin."
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:25   #3
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Re: question about lightning

Still about 15 minutes before it gets here.

All is secure from wind problems. It's just my first time on a boat with severe lightning on the horizon and I had time to ask.

I was thinking it might make sense to unplug the dock power, but really have no idea if that matters.

I did however just pop the top on a brew, I think that will help.
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:28   #4
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Re: question about lightning

If it is that severe, I suppose I would disconnect shore power for a while. I would also disconnect the antenna leads to my electronics. Not too sure if that would really help but the other alternative is to disconnect the electronics and put them in the oven (a Faraday cage).

On the other hand, keep your insurance up to date and follow osirissail's advice. That would work for me too.

Rich
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:34   #5
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Re: question about lightning

Definitly unplug from the dock! If a transformer gets hit 1/4 mile away, it might save your electronics to be UNplugged! M.
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:45   #6
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Re: question about lightning

I'm unplugged.

Lightning struck close by just as I touched the cord to remove.

Scared the living daylights out me, 'bout jumped off the boat!

I think another brew is in order.

Thanks guys.
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:47   #7
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Re: question about lightning

I would strongly suggest getting off the boat and onto your bike and going to a bar/grill. That is unless you don't mind having all your curly hair, both on top of you and down lower singed off your body should your boat take a direct hit.
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Old 28-03-2011, 16:50   #8
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Re: question about lightning

Yep to late to head for the bar. We'll be waiting for the report
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Old 28-03-2011, 17:02   #9
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Re: question about lightning

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
I would strongly suggest getting off the boat and onto your bike and going to a bar/grill. That is unless you don't mind having all your curly hair, both on top of you and down lower singed off your body should your boat take a direct hit.
So long as he's not holding onto something that's grounded, he should be alright. There's supposed to be a cone of protection extending out 45 degrees from the mast head. Of course there is some disagreement as to whether it is true.

Lightning and Your Boat - BoatSafe.com

Personally, I and my dogs HATE lightning. Beam me up Scotty!

Rich
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Old 28-03-2011, 17:22   #10
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Re: question about lightning

I had a wonderful, smart, bulldog mix now passed that could not abide the sound of thunder. She would squeeze into any tight spot near me at the sound. Usually between my chair and a flat-file cabinet for drawings.


The storm has split to my north and south. Most of the lightning is south of me now. With one more area still off shore heading this way.

An hour ago the lightning map looked like it was paving a highway of strike symbols directly toward me. Seems much less severe now so all is well.
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Old 28-03-2011, 17:26   #11
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Re: question about lightning

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Originally Posted by four winds View Post
I'm unplugged.

Lightning struck close by just as I touched the cord to remove.

Scared the living daylights out me, 'bout jumped off the boat!

I think another brew is in order.

Thanks guys.
Once I was riding my motorcycke in a blinding rain / terrible thunderstorm & late at night, when JUST before I passed the next telephone pole, it's transformer took a hit... and I went through a shower of sparks and shrapnel at 60 MPH! Between the noise that left me deaf for a while, and the light show, I damn near ***** myself! I pulled over and just sat there a while...

Lightning will get your attention! M.
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Old 28-03-2011, 18:43   #12
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Re: question about lightning

Hi,

We disconnect and turn off EVERYTHING (this includes our VHF antenna, etc..).

Then we put small electronics into the oven.

Then we sit it out.

Being offshore might help.

b.
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Old 28-03-2011, 20:11   #13
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Re: question about lightning

At a home on land the option of disconnecting from the grid isn't practical. When I was a kid my Mom would unplug the TV. (our first color tv back in the 60s)

When away from the marina a boat is typically connected and left to chance. (?)

These two ideas led me to wonder what action to take while present on the the boat. Seems in a forest of masts the marina would be a lightning magnet, but I'm not sure about that. Maybe it's similar to the idea of an auto being a safe place since the car is insulated by it's tires to some extent. Not sure if fiberglass insulates a boat from the water, but bronze through hulls would provide a path. Still need to read the link above.

Once lighting struck in front of my car while parked so close the bolt appeared to be 10 feet wide. I heard a crackle in the air just before the strike. It was an assume display about 10 yards away.

Thanks for the feedback. So much of this new chapter in my life is knew to me, but I can't think of a place I'd rather be.
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Old 28-03-2011, 20:23   #14
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Re: question about lightning

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I did however just pop the top on a brew, I think that will help.

(later)

I think another brew is in order.
So, how bad was it? 3, 4 beers, or a whole six-pack?

John
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Old 28-03-2011, 20:27   #15
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Re: question about lightning

Still sipping on number three. But I'm a cheap drunk so that's plenty to take the edge off.



The weather and myself are calm now.
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