Incredible shades of purple were captured in the lightning storm around Mackay.
© Marty Strecker
Incredible shades of purple were captured in the lightning storm around Mackay.
A terrific light show overnight has given the Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday region a vibrant kick-off to the storm season.

Ergon Energy said more than 200,000 lightning strikes were recorded across the region since Tuesday afternoon.

"Mackay and surrounds ... in a 100-kilometre radius it was more than 76,500 lightning strikes," spokeswoman Emma Oliveri said.


Moranbah recorded 35,000 and Airlie Beach clocked up 30,000.



Talkback caller John Emms, from Schumanns Road in Eungella, told ABC Tropical North while he got just 14mm of rain, the lightning was incredible.

"That's the best storm I've ever seen, continuous lightning and thunder," he said.

"Better than a night artillery barrage, and I've been in one of those before today."

Dan from Mount Charlton, north of Mackay, said it was the thunder that got the blood pumping a little.

"We had a terrific light show to start with, and then ... the thunder was right on top of us," he said.

"We'd just got to bed and got one big flash of lightning and the thunder just straight on top of us and both my wife and myself just jumped, it just gave us that big a fright, it was that loud and so close.

"I don't scare too easily but it gave us a bit of a shock."

Continuous stunning displays like this one in the suburb of Richmond branched across Mackay's skies.
© Shivani Kumar
Continuous stunning displays like this one in the suburb of Richmond branched across Mackay's skies.
Power substation damage

Meanwhile, more than 65,000 strikes were cast across Glenden, in the state's Central Highlands, where the onslaught caused damage to substation equipment and subsequent power outages.

"We have a lightning arrester that's been damaged," Ergon Energy spokeswoman, Emma Oliveri, said.

"A lightning arrester is there to protect sensitive equipment at the sub-station from more extensive damage.

"So it's done it's job — it's there to divert lightning, but it's been destroyed in the process.

"It's not necessarily the replacement of that equipment that takes time, it's also getting safe access to the network."

Ms Oliveri said power had been lost to the 470 customers serviced by the Glenden substation and crews were working to replace the equipment.

"I'm very conscious of shift workers who rely on air conditioning," she said.

Ergon Energy said it hoped to have power restored by 3pm Wednesday.