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‘It sounded like a sonic boom’, couple describes lightning strike while on highway
Julia Parrish, CTV Edmonton
Published Thursday, June 5, 2014 5:59PM MDT
Last Updated Thursday, June 5, 2014 7:04PM MDT
A quiet drive on a rural highway turned terrifying for one couple over the weekend, after their vehicle was struck by lightning.
Al and Betty Perry were driving on Highway 14 near Tofield Saturday afternoon, when the unthinkable happened.
“It sounded like a sonic boom,” Al said. “It was…that’s how loud [it was].”
Surveillance cameras recorded the freak occurrence - showing the moment a fireball struck, and appeared to engulf, the Perry’s silver Chevrolet pickup truck.
“It was all blowing up in front of my face,” Betty said.
Inside the truck, airbags deployed, the metal body was rippled by the heat, and then smoke began to fill the cabin, making it difficult for either Al or Betty to see or breathe.
Parts of the truck were completely melted, Al said he believed the electrical system inside the truck was also destroyed, and that made escape the vehicle nearly impossible, he tried for some time to get out, but the doors and windows were locked and would not open.
“I turned my body and put my two feet up and tried to kick the window out,” Al said. “I don’t know how many times I tried and tried and tried.
“How are we going to get out of this particular thing? This is a coffin,” Al continued.
Meanwhile, outside, an RCMP officer happened to be driving by – and helped the couple escape.
Afterwards, Al and Betty were checked by doctors, and both were given a clean bill of health, and they celebrated their 47th wedding anniversary a few days after their harrowing experience.
Coming up Friday, June 6, 2014 David Ewasuk will have the story of the RCMP officer who came to the couple’s rescue.
With files from David Ewasuk
A still taken from surveillance video shows the moment lightning struck a truck that had Al and Betty Perry inside.