CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – There are sounds you’d typically hear in the Madison Park neighborhood in Charlotte.


Lawn mowers.

“There was a sonic boom. And it was so loud,” said Barbara Busey.

But what knocked Barbara out of her seat on Tuesday night was something she still can’t get out of her head.

“It was glowing, so the house is dark right, so there’s no power, and it’s glowing,” remembered Barbara.

Peaking out from underneath her water closet were flames.

“Sink has melted, plastic sink,” said Barbara.

That sonic boom was a lightning strike on Tuesday night. It hit her water heater and set her water closet on fire.

“How freakish? You always people always say tall things are more dangerous, right — so? You’d think that pole or something that comes out of my roof might be a problem,” said Barbara.

But she’s still got a question. How?

“It’s so skinny, like how did it get there without killing the tree or something?” asked Barbara.

How did the lightning happen to strike a pole in her chain link fence that was right next to her water heater? Especially when it’s tucked in an alleyway surrounded by taller buildings and even taller trees

“This is crazy,” said Barbara. “The finish was just zapped.”

On her pole is a small black spot, about a baseball-sized. The metal finish is gone, and the handle that opens her gate is melted shut.

“But, this latch right here is- has been frozen solid; it won’t move,” said Barbara.

She said she’d noticed that her fence and the pipe to her water heater touched. She thought it was odd, but she’d had repair people out there before, and it was never an issue.