Lightning is a discharge of electricity, of enormous proportion. A single strike of lightning can heat the air in its path to around 30,000ºC, or about five times hotter than the surface of the sun.
Extreme heat happening in rapid progression causes the air to expand at explosive rate, creating a shock wave or the sound we know as thunder.
Lightning is spectacular and dangerous at the same time. Statistics suggest that lightning killed about 2,000 people each year worldwide.
The average American has about 1 in 5,000 chance of getting struck by lightning during an entire lifetime.
Despite the extremely hot temperature, hundreds of people survive strikes but a lot of them also develop lasting symptoms such as weakness, dizziness, numbness, and memory loss among others.
A single strike can cause severe burns and cardiac arrest, but 9 out of 10 people who have been struck by lightning survive.
Some of those people are listed below.
10 Peter McCathie
Lucky would be a blatant understatement to describe the fate of one Peter McCathie.
When he was a teenager, he experienced something that probably nobody else he knows his entire life will: getting struck by a lightning and survive. He was on a boating trip when he saw a white cloud formed above him, and then the seemingly improbable happened.
Lightning came down from the cloud through the trees and touched him. Then in 2015, he won a million dollar lottery prize.
Apparently few years earlier, his daughter was also struck by lightning. The odds of those three events happening to one person is 1 in 2.6 trillion.
9 Britney Wehrle
The 11 years old Britney Wehrle was taking a walk with a friend in Washington, Pennsylvania.
It was a sunny day, but she did not know that at the time a storm was forming several miles away. She did not even notice that she had been struck by lightning when it happened.
She began to realize the unfortunate event when she arrived in front of her home and tried to open the door. She couldn’t move her left arm and saw a burn mark on the wrist and shoulder.
It was later discovered that the lightning bolt entered her shoulder and flowed through her wrist. She was in good shape nonetheless, and eventually recovered.
8 Jaime Santana
In the evening of April 30, 2016, Jaime Santana and his brother-in-law were horseback riding near Buckeye, Arizona.
It was not the sunniest day to say the least; the sky was filled with lightning and rain that all aircrafts were also grounded.
The brother-in-law, Alex Torres, witnessed how Santana’s chest caught fire a moment after he had been struck by lightning.
He was taken to the hospital and receiving treatment for four months. Santana recovered, but his horse did not.
7 Dylan Nichols
Dylan Nichols was 21 years when a lightning just happened to strike him.
At that time, he was a technician at the F.X. Caprara Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep dealership.
In August 31, 2016 at approximately 12:25 p.m., he actually did nothing unusual.
He was just sitting against a garage door in the dealership and enjoying his lunch when a lightning struck.
Nichols complained of numbness and chest pain afterward, and was found lying on the ground.
He survived the incident, probably because the garage door absorbed the bulk of the electricity and heat.