Author Topic: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !  (Read 675 times)

Offline awemawson

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A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« on: July 24, 2017, 06:21:48 AM »
There was I, sitting up in bed at 07:15, coffee ready to drink , iPad on looking at various forums, when there was a VERY bright flash in my eyeline out of the window, accompanied by a loud THUD  :bugeye:

Power must have been lost briefly and then returned, as my alarm clock was flashing "12:00"

I shot up, threw some clothes on and went to investigate. No obvious signs of damage to the 11kV -> 415 three phase transformer that we have in the vegetable plot - quick pop into the barn to check each phase - all are present.

Phone call to UK Power Networks, and their system had logged that the 'Bowlings Re-Closer' (a massive switch on a pole also on our land) had opened and closed about that time.

.... then I found the culprit . Lying below the pair of poles that the transformer is mounted on was a Magpie - burnt to a frazzle. It must have alighted on the lightening discharge points on the transformer, taken an 11kV shock, fallen off, and was the cause of the actual flash I'd seen, then the re-closer having detected a line fault had opened and then re-closed 5 seconds later.

The lightning points  are only a few inches apart so I imagine the bird caused a phase to phase discharge arc  :scratch:
Andrew Mawson
East Sussex

Offline edward

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2017, 06:53:23 AM »
'One for sorrow' was definitely true for the Magpie....

Offline John Rudd

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2017, 06:56:08 AM »
Oh dear what a way to go.... :zap:

They do say...." One for sorrow....etc"

Hope it hasnt spoilt your day too much Andrew.....
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Location:  Backworth Newcastle

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Offline awemawson

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2017, 07:11:35 AM »
I suppose it was more of a shock for the Magpie than me  :lol:


.... twiddling my thumbs at the moment waiting for my Tractor Shed builder to turn up - looks like the morning is already lost  :bang:
Andrew Mawson
East Sussex

Offline Pete.

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2017, 11:37:26 AM »
I hope there are no gas lines running through your plot Andrew it's the only utility you haven't blown up yet...

Offline awemawson

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2017, 11:50:27 AM »
Thank's for your confidence Pete  :lol:

No sadly no gas, and in no way did I motivate the Magpie to commit Hara Kiri even if it was always nicking the pig food !
Andrew Mawson
East Sussex

Offline russ57

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Re: A Bright Flash and Loud Bang in the Morning !
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2017, 06:27:39 AM »
You do have a an interesting life Andrew!

Here in suburban Melbourne we seem to have more than our share of short outages like this, I recognise the recloser behaviour - typically off for a couple of seconds, on for a couple, off for 10 if the fault is still present, then on. I presume this is to incinerate any remnant carcass . If that fails it's off for hours. So, I installed batteries and inverter. Problem solved....


-russ