Lightning destroys Wollongong firies’ pole

The hose whip, before and after Tuesday night's lightning strike.
The hose whip, before and after Tuesday night's lightning strike.

Lightning has made light work of a 15-metre pole in Wollongong, coming precariously close to the city’s fire station.

The timber pole, topped with metal components, is a hose whip.

It is used by firefighters to hang out and dry wet hoses. 

On Wednesday morning it sported a dramatic split down its middle, the results of a damaging storm that passed over the city on Tuesday night. 

The strike came as a multi-million dollar redevelopment at the Denison Street station nears completion. 

Wollongong fire station’s Peter Starling said the pole was still standing, but had to be removed. 

“Halfway down it you could see a hole through it, it had to come down,” he said.

“Big splinters of it came off in the [strike].” 

Residents of a neighbouring unit complex were evacuated from their homes on Wednesday as the pole was safely removed, with a crane was brought in to lift it out of position. 

The city’s firefighters have been working out of a temporary fire station and zone office, located further along Denison Street, while the construction project continues.