A LIGHTNING storm that lit up the South East sky on Wednesday night was caused by tropical moisture in the air from the north east.
The storm produced a staggering 224,000 lightning strikes across South Australia over 24 hours.
Adelaide-based Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Paul Bierman said the moisture and very hot temperatures combined led to the extensive storm activity.
“Over the Lower South East in particular, two storms merged together,” he said.
While the electrical show startled the public, a tragic strike killed three horses at Tarpeena and emergency services were kept on high alert with a number of spot fires created by lightening strikes.
Country Fire Service crews from Yahl and Moorak both attended two separate fires in the Yahl region started by lightning.
Mount Gambier CFS operations captain Bob Davis said both fires were minor and caused minimal damage.
“One of the fires burnt a few small hay bales and the other started in a forest area and we believe it burned out itself,” Mr Davis said.
Wattle Range CFS crews also attended another fire in the Honan Forest Reserve in Wandilo, which was located by a spotter plane.
“I am quite surprised the plane even spotted it because the fire was in quite dense country,” Wattle Range CFS group officer Fred Stent said.
The fire burnt around 50 square metres and took crews around three hours to fully extinguish.
“A ForestrySA fire king assisted with the job and our crews did a great job of extinguishing the fire once they could get to it,” Mr Stent said.
“There was only a small track to where the fire was, so we had to let 13 lengths of canvas hose out and it took a little bit of time to get there.”
As well as thunder and lightning, a small amount of rain was also measured in the region with 5mm in Naracoorte, 3.8mm in Keith and 3.4mm in Mount Gambier and Kalangadoo.
However, Mr Bierman said this is not the end of the wet weather with between 8 to 25mm of rain expected in Mount Gambier throughout the morning and early afternoon today.
“There is a 90pc chance of rain in Mount Gambier with the rain band showing heavier falls in the Upper South East and Murraylands,” he said.
Making the most of the lightning display, locals from across the region honed their photography skills, capturing the moments as the lightning struck across the region.
Images courtesy of Andrew Burston, Christy Wallace, Trevor Jackson, Belinda Whitehead, Michael Allen and Shane Lewis, thank you for sharing.