▪ Cloud-to-ground lightning bolts are a common phenomenon-about 100 strike Earth’s surface every single second. Each bolt can contain up to one billion volts of electricity.
▪ Lightning often strikes the same place repeatedly, especially if it’s a tall, pointy, isolated object. The Empire State Building is hit an average of 23 times a year.
▪ The human body does not store electricity, so it is perfectly safe to touch a lightning victim to provide first aid.
▪ You can’t have thunder without lightning because thunder is the sound caused by lightning. A charged, superheated lightning bolt creates a “resonating tube” as it travels. The air in the tube rapidly expands and contracts causing vibrations that you hear as the rumble of thunder.
▪ Astraphobia is the third most common phobia in America.
▪ Florida is the Lightning Capital of the U.S. Central Florida, from Tampa to Titusville, is “Lightning Alley”.
▪ Pennsylvania leads the U.S. in lightning damage.
▪ Without thunderstorms, the earth would lose its electric charge in less than an hour.
▪ Lightning puts 10 million tons of nitrogen into the Earth each year.
▪ Most lightning strikes occur either at the beginning or end of a storm.
▪ Lightning is only about one inch in diameter. It looks much wider just because it’s light is so bright.
▪ It was reported in London that two women were killed by a bolt of lightning when their under-wired bras acted as conductors as they sheltered under a tree.
▪ If you are able to count up to 5 seconds from the time you see the lightning to the time you hear the thunder, you can deduce that the storm is at a distance of one mile because sound takes 5 seconds to travel a distance of one mile.
▪ Fulminology is the term used to describe the study of lightning.
▪ Lightning over land is far more common than lightning over oceans and seas.
▪ A lightning bolt has a temperature of roughly 54,000 degrees Fahrenheit, which is around 5 times hotter than the sun.
▪ Don’t take a shower or bath during a thunderstorm. If the house gets struck by lightening, the electricity will travel through the plumbing and wiring.
▪ The notion that car tires act as insulators is false. The reason you are safe in a metal enclosed vehicle is because the lightning will travel around the shell of the car.
▪ The majority (37 percent) of lightning-related deaths occur during water activities, with 48 percent of those succumbing to lightning while fishing.
▪ Thunderstorms may create lightning that gives off gamma rays. These invisible rays can disrupt satellites orbiting hundreds of miles above the earth.
▪ The majority of lightning victims are male between the ages of 10 to 60; almost two-thirds of them were engaged in outdoor leisure activities.
▪ Don’t be fooled by sunshine or a blue sky after a thunderstorm. The threat of lightning continues for a much longer period than most people realize. Wait at least 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder before leaving shelter.
▪ The Fourth of July is historically one of the most deadly times of the year for lightning in the U.S. In summer, especially on a holiday, more people are outside.
▪ Surge protectors do not protect against direct lightning strikes. Unplug equipment such as computers and televisions.
▪ It does not have to be raining for lightning to strike.
▪ Lightning is one of the oldest observed natural phenomena on earth. It can be seen in volcanic eruptions, extremely intense forest fires, surface nuclear detonations, heavy snowstorms and in large hurricanes.