Crack! Boom! It’s lightning season again!

Lightning strike (© NOAA)Mirror, mirror, on the wall… who’s the fairest of them all?

Hopefully those weren’t the words just off the lips of two people in a house in Jefferson County, Colorado when, on the evening of Sept. 4, 1995, the building was struck by lightning.

The bolt’s energy entered through the attic, traveled through the house, and caused a mirror to explode, showering  the two occupants with shards of glass.

Others have been injured by electrical charges speeding across the ground following a lightning strike or by electricity traveling down utility lines, as documented on a U.S. National Weather Service web page.

All hazards worth remembering as Manitoba enters another thunderstorm season.

“You’re more likely to be hit by lightning,” is an often-used phrase to denote a rare event or unlikely outcome.

Rare, but not quite one-in-a-million. Every year, roughly 125 Canadians are struck by lightning, a 2008 Toronto Star report noted, based on Environment Canada sources. Most are victims of indirect hits and survive.

In other words, the average person still has a greater chance of being struck by lightning than of becoming prime minister or a provincial premier.

As might be expected, open fields and elevated areas are risky places to be when lightning is nearby. (Relieving yourself by the side of the road when there’s lightning in the vicinity is also not recommended, as a Croatian motorcyclist will attest.)

But those aren’t the only places where lightning strikes:

Even a bit of faith in the Almighty is insufficient protection, as demonstrated in incidents where:

With the possibility of more thunderstorm activity in the forecast, be careful out there.


Environment Canada lightning safety information

Lightning activity across Canada (Environment Canada)

Manitoba Weather Warnings

Intellicast Radar Summary from Bismarck, N.D. (includes southern Manitoba)


About theviewfromseven
A lone wolf and a bit of a contrarian who sometimes has something to share.

One Response to Crack! Boom! It’s lightning season again!

  1. Kelly Walker says:

    I find weather fascinating. Especially the way it can quickly change.

    Have you ever been in a conversation that went like this, “I heard the high today will be 23. No I heard it will be 21. Uh uh it’s supposed to rain and be 20”. There are so many media sources now with their weather forecasts. Unfortunately their forecasts all don’t originate from the same source. The other morning I did an experiment. I checked six weather sources. Four on tv, two on radio, didn’t even bother with the paper (by the time you read the paper in the morning the forecast is old). All six sources reported different forecasts. No wonder the public is so misinformed.

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