Electrical equipment destroyed after bolt of lightning strikes Port Talbot house
IT was in a flash that James Rees had all his electrical equipment destroyed due to a bolt of lightning.
The 25-year-old is counting the cost after a bolt struck his Port Talbot home and wrecked more than £1,000 worth of items.
He had planned a quiet night in with his friends — Scott Bennett, Rhys Lilley, Thomas Edwards, and Gareth Barness — watching football.
But when a thunderstorm erupted in the sky above — their evening took a frightening turn.
"There were around five of us in the house and there was a massive explosion," said James, who lives on his own at his Purcell Avenue home in Sandfields.
"We were just watching the football and lightning hit and blew everything in the house.
"Everything just went all white.
"It blew the telephone box plugged into the wall and there was a black patch on the curtains where the socket exploded.
"Everything was connected to each other so it ran through it all and blew everything.
"It blew my PlayStation which cost £400, my £800 plasma television and a laptop that had been plugged in,"
James, who works as a design engineer at Tata Steel, said, luckily, nothing caught alight and there was no need to call the fire service — but they all had a big fright.
"We were all just shocked," he said. "It is a funny thing to happen. Everyone just ducked and tried to brace themselves.
"I was glad I had everyone over."
The group had been admiring the storm before the incident, but never dreamed it would hit the house.
"We were looking in the sky across towards Swansea and the sky was jet black," he said.
"We waited for the lightning but nothing happened so we went inside.
"We got in and 10 minutes later the lightning struck.
"I live on the very edge of the row on the street and I think that is why my house was struck.
"It is one of the loudest things I have ever experienced."
James said he hoped he would be able to get everything replaced.
"The insurance company phoned me today and they are going to have a look at my stuff and send an engineer down," he said.