A weekend Air New Zealand flight from Invercargill was struck by lightning shortly after take-off, although no injuries or damage were reported.
Flight NZ 696, a direct service to Auckland, was just moments into its flight on Sunday afternoon when the incident happened.
The flight was being operated by an Airbus A320 with registration ZK-NHB.
Newshub’s Travel Editor Dan Lake was onboard and said it happened so fast that many passengers may not have even noticed it.
“There was a bright flash of white and a rumbling sound, and the screens and lights flickered a bit. It was just like when you have a power surge at home, but other than that, it wasn’t very dramatic at all,” said Lake.
A passenger sitting next to him had noise-cancelling headphones on and didn’t notice a thing.
Air NZ has confirmed the incident in a statement.
“I can confirm flight NZ696 Invercargill to Auckland did experience a lightning strike. Lightning strikes are not uncommon – aircraft are designed with this in mind and our pilots train for this scenario,” a spokesperson told Newshub.
Flights out of Invercargill were operating as scheduled on Sunday, but a forecast of strong winds, rain and snow may cause delays or cancellations on Monday and Tuesday.