Chris Bergin and his brother, Ben, were jamming along to "Message in a Bottle" on the videogame Guitar Hero 2 during a storm in June when a bright light flashed and a thunderclap shook their house in Wilton, Conn.
The lightning strike nearby triggered a power surge that snaked through the house's electrical system to Mr. Bergin's PlayStation 2 then traveled through the wiring to the plastic guitar controller pressed up against his stomach.
With the spread of high-tech devices, including laptops and videogames, means there are new ways in which people can suffer injuries or property losses, even in the relative safety of their homes. A division of Sony Corp., Sony Computer Entertainment America, the maker of PlayStation products, says it hadn't heard of incidents like this and says its devices come with safety instructions about lightning. Activision Inc., which makes the Guitar Hero game, advocates staying off electronics during storms.