Lightning forces brief school evacuation in Goldsboro

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Lightning caused a brief evacuation at Eastern Wayne Middle School Thursday morning (WTVD)

Wayne County parents are relieved Thursday's storm only packed a small punch at Eastern Wayne Middle School.

Thursday morning around 9:30, lightning caused a brief evacuation. School leaders say the strike hit one of the A/C units above the school's computer lab.

There were 26 students inside the lab who smelled something burning.

Goldsboro firefighters at Station 5 - across the street from the middle school - responded.

Meanwhile, the school's principal moved all 400 students to the gym.

Firefighters determined the lightning strike sent a power surge to the A/C unit - switching it from cold air to heat.

Dust around the unit caused the burning smell.

Students returned to class an hour later.

"Students were very calm," said Ken Derksen, spokesman for Wayne County Schools. "This is something they practice every month with fire drills and evacuations, so the kids just fell right in line with what they had to do."

Derksen says parents were notified shortly after the threat was over.

The computer in A/C unit has been rebooted and the unit is now working properly.

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