A disabled woman has praised her young friend’s bravery after lightning struck her house during a thunderstorm at the weekend.
Gemma-Lee Hammersley, who is unable to walk without the use of crutches, has described the fear she felt when the bolt hit the roof of her bungalow in Buckden Close, Woodloes, on Saturday afternoon.
Fortunately she had her partner’s ten-year-old brother Jack Capell with her who, despite having suffered a slight electric shock from a work surface in the kitchen which was ‘live’ with electricity, managed to get her and her two dogs out of the house.
Miss Hammersley said: “You wouldn’t think that kind of thing would happen in a million years.
“I’m overwhelmed with what Jack did - we were very shaken but I was so relieved he was there to look after me.
“We were both in shock and acted on impulse. One minute I pulled him away from the work surface and the next he was getting me out of the house - it’s like we saved each others’ lives in that short time.”
Video footage of the lightning strike, which took place on Saturday afternoon, was captured by neighbour Mark Hardy who has posted the clip on Youtube.
Slowed down footage shows one bolt hit the tree in front of the bungalow and another hitting the roof within a split second.
The tree was subsequently damaged.
The video, titled Lightning strike UK 19/7/14, has had more than 40,000 hits on the website,
Acting on the advice given to her by the fire and rescue service and then her electricity provider, Miss Hammersley was not able to return to her home until 8pm that evening after an engineer had done a thorough check of the property.
In the meantime her and Jack helped some of the elderly residents in the area whose telephone lines were out of service due to the lightning strike.
The only damage done was to a few roof tiles and a broom, which was snapped in half by the strike.
Miss Hammersley said: “I’m surprised no real damage was caused.”
Mr Hardy’s video of the lightning strike can be found on Youtube, by searching Lightning strike uk 19 / 7 / 14 - WARNING: It contains strong swearing at the end.