Lightning strike

A lightning strike or lightning bolt is an electric discharge between the atmosphere and a ground object. They usually originate in a cumulonimbus cloud and terminate on the earth, called cloud to ground lightning.

Does lightning strike from the sky down, or the ground up? The answer is both. Cloud-to-ground lightning comes from the sky down, but the part you see comes from the ground up. A typical cloud-to-ground flash lowers a path of negative electricity (that we cannot see) towards the ground in a series of spurts.

Lightning trikes injures more people than it kills in general. Ground currents, which spreads out over the ground surface after the lightning strikes, are the bigger danger, accounting for about 50-55 percent of all lightning deaths and injuries, says the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

When lightning strike a building, the odds of being struck by lightning are 1 in a million. And the odds of surviving one of these major bolts of electricity are surprisingly good. Only about one in 10 people who are struck by lightning are killed.

If you receive a warning about a thunderstorm or hear thunder, go indoors immediately. If you already are indoors, avoid running water or using wired equipment. Electricity can travel through plumbing and phone lines. Unplug appliances and other electric devices.

It isn’t really dangerous to watch Television during a thunderstorm, but the electronics in a television set are vulnerable to lightning strikes. Over-voltages resulting from a lightning strike may follow electrical conductors into the handset. Don’t shelter under large trees.

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