Boy dies after being struck by lightning at One Mile Beach, Port Stephens FEATURED MidCoast LGA (overall news) Regional News by Dave Brazier - November 1, 2014November 2, 2014 A teenage boy, 15 has died following a lightning strike at One Mile Beach, Port Stephens. About 5.10pm (Saturday 1 November 2014), emergency services responded to reports of a boy hit by lightning at Hannah Parade, One Mile, Port Stephens. Officers from Port Stephens Local Area Command attended the beach and found a 15-year-old on the beach. He died at the scene. The surf lifesavers got on the microphone system about half an hour before the storm came through saying everyone get out of the water and there was a major storm warning. Witnesses have told police that the teen was struck by lightning as he came out of the water at the beach. CPR was commenced prior to paramedics arriving. A rescue helicopter was also called to the scene. Paramedics continued CPR on the boy for about one hour but he could not be revived. The teenager was from the Beresfield/Thornton area and was staying at the One Mile caravan park with friends. An investigation is underway into the incident and a report will be prepared for the information of the Coroner. Further to the current ferocious weather, As the storm season approaches, Essential Energy is advising residents across regional New South Wales to prepare their properties early to keep their families safe during severe weather events. Strong winds and wild weather increase the risk of damage to the overhead electricity network, particularly from vegetation and trees that are growing too close to powerlines. Essential Energy’s regional manager North Coast, Brendon Neyland, urged residents to remove debris from around their homes, clear gutters and ensure trees were a safe distance from powerlines. “The majority of storm-related outages are caused by tree branches and debris being blown into overhead powerlines,” Brendon said. “In these situations, residents are reminded to keep at least eight metres clear of fallen powerlines or any objects in contact with them and always assume the wires are live. “Be mindful when walking or driving after a storm that fallen tree branches may also hide damaged powerlines or other electrical equipment.” Essential Energy recommends households have a storm emergency kit ready that includes a flashlight with a supply of batteries, candles and waterproof matches, a portable radio with spare batteries to keep you informed of the situation, non-perishable food, a can opener, and fresh drinking water, spare warm dry clothing, a first aid kit and essential medications and a list of emergency contact numbers. In an emergency, Essential Energy crews will isolate fault areas and clear fallen vegetation from powerlines to make communities safe and, where possible, back-feed power from other areas. Major powerlines are re-energised first to restore electricity to the majority of customers. Once this is completed, field crews target individual faults and customers’ problems, such as broken house service lines. “We encourage residents to report any fallen powerlines, network damage, fires or trees contacting powerlines to Essential Energy on 13 20 80 or call Triple-0 if the situation is life-threatening,” Brendon said. For more information on electrical safety during storms, visit essentialenergy.com.au/safety or call Essential Energy on 13 23 91.