Lightning is a big problem in Donegal and the surrounding areas, mainly because modems and personal computers, in general, cannot handle the current a lightning strike can send through the phone lines.
This has, and will be a problem for a while as many companies do not advise their customers to protect their computers. Normally a good quality surge protector which covers power sockets and a phone line is good enough. But of course, if they told you how to protect your computer then the shops would not get extra business from you when you go back and explain that your machine is fried. Not forgetting the grief it can cause with potential damage or loss of important data. The inevitable insurance claims and the obvious excess on the insurance policies which would be payable by the customer adds to the headaches.
Most people are very alert to lightning and when they know lightning is forecast they unplug all the power sockets for all the electrical equipment in the house. TV, HiFi, Microwave, & PC Etc. BUT most of the time they forget the telephone line plugged into the rear of the computer. Often as is the case people were not aware that the lightning came down the phone lines too. In fact, in most cases, phone lines are the biggest cause of lightning damage we have seen.
This picture is an example of what happens to a modem when it gets hit by lightning. The surge comes in the phone lines and destroys the modem circuits and then if it can, proceeds out of the gold connectors at the bottom left in the picture and then damages or destroys the rest of your computer. We see this in dozens of computers we inspect for customers and insurance companies too, many reports have been written which have made customers unhappy because the have lost valuable data or were unaware that the lightning came in the phone line.
So... you ask yourself. The purpose of this article. Well, if you live in an exposed area and are worried about potential lightning damage to your computer then get a Surge protector with telephone protection on it. It can and probably will save you money.