A dramatic thunder storm lit up the skies over Dorset on Tuesday morning.

Huge flashes of lightning were seen in Bournemouth, Poole and Swanage accompanied by heavy downpours.

Bournemouth Echo:

Picture by James Ferrett of the storm rolling in 

Homes and businesses across the county were subsequently affected by power cuts including Bournemouth and Poole hospitals, as well as Castlepoint and the Dolphin Shopping Centre

Power cuts were reported in the BH13, BH15 AND BH22 postcodes.

Debenhams and Boots in Bournemouth had to close temporarily, and Poole’s Dolphin Shopping Centre suffered a temporary outage.

Heavy rain caused flash flooding in the Lower Gardens between the mini golf and pathway to the toilets.

There were also reports of a lightning strike on a building at Ferndown Industrial Estate, although it is not believed any damage was caused.

Bournemouth Echo:  

Fire crews from Poole and Christchurch were called out at midday following reports an electrical substation had been struck by lightning and had started to smoke in Richmond Park Road, Bournemouth. 

A spokesperson for Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue said: “Crews could find no sign of smoke or fire and the attendance of BT were required to re-establish connection of telephone and satellite services.”

Crews also attended what was believed to be a fire in Heatherbank Road after a building's roof aerial was struck by lightning.

The spokesperson said a full inspection was carried out but "no signs of fire or smoke could be found".

Firefighters were called to The Triangle after “excessive rainwater and a dislodged drainage pipe” caused internal flooding at an insurance company premises.

They used inflatable booms to protect electrical installations in addition to carrying out checks of adjoining properties.

South West Trains have also said there is no real-time information on the screens at Bournemouth Railway Station following the storm. 

Asda at Castlepoint was evacuated due to fire alarms going off but the store has now been reopened. The rest of Castlepoint was unaffected.

Peter Matthews, Castlepoint manager, said: "We were told to expect the hottest day of the year, so we're all sat here in bikinis and we suddenly get thunder and lightning."

The MRI and CT scanners at Royal Bournemouth Hospital were also temporarily out of action.

Both CT scanners and two out of the three MRI scanners are now back up and running. 

A number of IT systems at Poole Hospital were also affected by the storm.

A spokesperson for the hospital said: "As part of our business continuity plans, our IT team is working to rectify any outstanding issues and we expect all systems to be back online shortly."

The phone lines are also out of action at the Queens Hotel in Bournemouth. 

According to the Met Office, Wednesday will see a return of sunny spells and warm temperatures.

The warm weather is set to last until Thursday with highs of 25C predicted.

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