Lightning Fast Repairs on the Isle of Skye

Michael Tate, a Metering Technician in the Operations Department at Energy Assets, went above and beyond the call of duty when a lightning storm on the Isle of Skye caused major disruption for a customer after lightning struck their premises.

In the late afternoon of December 9th, Michael received a call from Stephen MacLeod, a Senior Technical Support Engineer (TSE) on the Energy Assets Tech Desk, alerting him to a rapid response situation on the Isle of Skye. Lightning had struck the rear of the customer’s house which blew the fuses and cut-out, which in turn blew the meter due to a surge through the fuse. Michael had no hesitation in accepting the task ahead, and early the next morning Michael set off for the Isle of Skye to help.

By 10am Michael had made it to the site and met the customer and, upon being shown the job, realised that there was more to it.

It was originally thought that there was one meter affected by the lighting strike, but it turned out that all four of the meters on site were damaged. Michael needed to report this to the Tech Desk however, as there was no signal on site, he couldn’t make calls or send emails. After driving to a suitable signal spot he was able to send photographs of the site and technical details to the Tech Desk and explain the situation.

Once he’d received guidance from Kinnison Goddard, a TSE on the Tech Desk, Michael returned to the customer and discussed the best options.

The customer decided on 2 3-phase meters, which required Michael to drive back to his signal spot and call the Install Team, as well as pre-programme the two meters in his van as this task needed a strong signal, due to the non-standard meter tariff required.

Michael returned to the site one final time to complete his installations for the customer. The complex job took just over four hours to complete in its entirety. Michael faced adverse weather conditions throughout the job, including gale force winds and heavy rain all day, as well as another lightning storm lingering during the day. As he was wrapping up, a thunderstorm approached and brought snow with it.

Michael completed the exchange and re-cabling job to excellent standards and the customer was reportedly “over the moon” as they had originally been told by the supplier that there would be over a week’s wait until the 19th December.

With the date being so close to Christmas and, in the spirit of both the festive season and our core values, Michael made the 500 mile round trip to help a customer in need. Our engineers usually travel approximately 100 miles a day, so Michael literally went the extra mile, or 400, for our customers.