Fresno County man recovers from lightning strike

FRESNO, Calif.

Fresno County Sheriff's deputies said 54-year-old Rick Morelock smelled as if he had been burned but he is okay and now back at home. Neighbors say the storm moved in so quickly they didn't have much time to react.

The second round of lightning around the Valley did more than just rattle nerves. One of them struck a fence not far from where Morelock was changing the battery on his motor home in his backyard.

Neighbor Leo Inman said, "I heard this big ol' clap of lightning, I mean thunder, and it just scared me. The man, he came walking through here and I looked over to the fence, we all did. He was holding his hands on his head and moaning and the other man was helping him to the house."

Leo's neighbor Rick Morelock complained of a bad headache and neck pain but was treated and then released Tuesday from Community Regional Medical Center. Neighbors said the doctor ordered bed rest for Morelock.

The lightning and strong winds continued to cut through the Valley. Don Singh of Selma escaped injury but five of his trees blew over including a large one which was ripped right out of its roots and fell onto the road.

Don even watched his satellite dish leave its cement base and fly 25 feet into the air. He explained, "When you see that up in the air swirling around that's when I said let's move and get in the hallway."

The damage didn't end there. Part of his roof was blown off and his garage was hit hard as well. "We came out here and the garage door was wide open and I looked in the back and all the paneling from the back of the garage and I guess the air or whatever it was blew the door open and these tables flew out."

Don said he's never seen anything like it. "It started out as rain. The rain stopped, the hail came and after the hail it just calmed down and then everything started."

Don Singh is a raisin grower. He said he's fortunate he hadn't laid his grapes on trays yet because he could have lost much of his crop in the storm.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.