Topics

Lightning


sv_red_red_wine <sv_red_red_wine@...>
 

Has any one out there with a Maramu been hit with lightning, We have
all heard Joel's answer... but what happens when the boat is hit.
Paul and Helen Camp


pagandaisy <no_reply@...>
 

--- In amelyachtowners@y..., "sv_red_red_wine" <sv_red_red_wine@y...>
wrote:
Has any one out there with a Maramu been hit with lightning, We
have
all heard Joel's answer... but what happens when the boat is hit.
Paul and Helen Camp

My Maramu was struck by lightening some years ago. The VHF antenna
vanished. The charge went through the fuses, cooked the VHF radio,
radar (it was smoking) and other electronics that were on and then
silvered the fuses. Lights on below: cooked. A friend was at the
wheel (fortunately covered in leather). His hair stood on end.
Fortunately neither the engine nor seacocks were affected. Seeing
the storm coming I took in the sails and dropped a copper plate
attached to a chain overboard, wrapping the chain around the mast. I
don't believe it had any purposeful effect. Subsequently I read
everything available and checked all the advertised protective
devices, had conversations with so called experts. Over the years
I've spoken to a dozen people who have been struck. My conclusion: I
was lucky. My advice: disconnect all electronics, if possible
unplug them. At the very least disconnect at the circuit breakers.
If possible shut down your engine. Put your battery switches on
disconnect. Hang a copper plate overboard via a chain rather than a
wire. Who knows, maybe mine helped. If your wheel's not insulated,
do so. Need I say get as far away from the mast(s) and rigging as
possible. If I were building a boat from scratch I'd seriously
consider using Marlon seacocks.

I suspect that Amel's stepping the mast on the deck, and the chain
plates not being connected to the keel kept significant current from
getting to the seacocks and engine. Just a guess. Fortunately there
are not as many thunder ststorms in the Caribbean as in Long Island
Sound and the Chesapeake. If anyone out there has any useful
suggestions I'd be happy to learn them.

Arnold Grubin