PICS: Freak lightning bolt leaves 66 homes without water in Newquay
A LIGHTNING bolt damaged an underground water main, leaving 66 Newquay homes without water last night.
The surge of electricity reportedly shot down a lamppost and into the ground, where it ruptured a 10-inch pipe on Henver Road at around 7.45pm.
Neighbours and police officers took to the streets to block off driveways with sand and sweep the river of water away from properties.
Technicians from South West Water worked throughout the night and finally restored the water supply to the homes by 5am today.
Homeowner Des Evans, who rents out a property on the road, told the Cornish Guardian: “The amount of water was unbelievable. There were around 15 people sweeping water away; it was a great community effort.
“The lightning bolt hit the lamppost and travelled down it before blowing the water main. It was a freak occurrence.”
He said the problem had been made worse by the lack of a drain at that point on the road, as water had nowhere to go apart from down people’s driveways.
Water had flooded the bottom of his property through air vents.
“I’ll have to wait until it dries out before we can assess the damage to the property,” he said. “It won’t have done it any good though, that’s for sure.
“We’ve had a problem with standing water ever since the council did the road about four years ago. There’s no drain there so if there’s heavy rain then cars going through the water and send it pouring down people’s drives. I’ve got a meeting with them [the council] later so hopefully something might be done.”
A spokeswoman for South West Water said: “A technician attended and isolated the problem to 66 properties on Henver Road by 9.20pm. Our teams worked overnight to repair the burst and water supplies returned to normal for the last 66 properties in Henver Road by 4.55am this morning.”