I was thinking today after hearing of a lightning strike to a utility pole which caused a small electrical fire in the SP of one of the residents.
With that much energy coming along the secondary lines, it would be impossible to supress all of it, so there is going to be heavy damage to equipment connected.
While I have a whole-house surge protector on my SP, it is simply a crowbar across the lines, not any sort of inductor in series. My computer and TV are protected by their own high quality surge protectors.
Am I not correct in saying that the only way to get any significant protection from a direct hit by lightning on the secondary lines (or on the primary which causes an arc-over to the secondary in a transformer) is to unplug equipment from both the line and any signal cables during a severe storm when the chance of a pole hit are highest.
Where I live in NJ it is very rare for lightning to hit a pole, but it does happen.
Protecting against a direct lightning strike is almost an impossible task.
Even radio station transmitters can be burned up by a lightning strike if it hits in the right (or wrong) place. And they have some of the most expensive and extensive lightning protection systems installed!
As you have stated, the best protection is to unplug/disconnect everything before the lightning strikes.