Many of you would have been terrified when the sky darkens and the rain starts pouring and then this streak of light comes down like it’s no one’s business. Come on, you know what it is. This is lightning, the thing that everyone is scared about for the past millennia. Even cavemen were afraid of this because it was such a force of nature that it made everyone jump every time it strikes down nearby. Due to that there have been many myths and legends that come with lightning. Some are very silly and some very, very scary and they are both believed seriously. It is time to break those myths and finally give you some real facts about the force of nature called lightning.
10. Myth: Lightning will never strike at the same place twice
The truth of the story? No, it does strike at the same place, even more. You should have seen it already in many movies now and actually those special effects are based from real stories. Lightning will strike repeatedly in one area especially if it is a tall, pointy and isolated thing like an antenna. This is why most people nowadays like their antennas to be in a lower point of the building than being at the highest because it attracts lightning strikes when there is a thunderstorm. Did you know that the Empire State Building gets struck almost a hundred times a year? Well, now you know.
9. Myth: No clouds or not Raining then No Lightning
Actually you are not safe. If there is a nearby thunderstorm cloud, chances are you will be struck 3 miles from it. Better stay safe indoors before trying to brave a thunderstorm because you really can’t predict where it strikes. Oh yeah, remember those “bolts from the blue” type of lightning strikes? They can strike 10-15 miles from the thunderstorm. Yikes, that is really scary. Stay indoors if you can then.
8. Myth: Cars can protect you due to the tires that insulate you from the ground
Wrong! Well most cars can protect you actually but that myth is kind of wrong in some perspective. While certainly cars can protect you, it is not the rubber tires that save you. The ones that really save you is the metal roof and metal sides of the car. Those who have no roofs aka convertibles will not protect you from the lightning strikes. The metal frame is the one that takes in the lightning strike and then it goes down to the ground. When you are in the car, do not lean on the doors while the storm is still going on.
7. Myth: When a person gets electrified by lightning or by an electrical charge, do not touch them because you will be electrocuted
This one is just plain silly. The body of a human does not store electricity! Unlike what you see in cartoons and some comedy films, the human body is not storage for electricity. You can quickly treat the lightning or electrocuted victim and it is safe to touch them. Never hesitate and never be misinformed again because if you were, you might not just have saved a person because you thought it was not safe!
6. Myth: Stay under trees because they can protect you and keep you dry
Do not be an idiot. Staying under the tree to keep yourself dry is just asking the thunderstorm to strike you. Remember, trees are tall and pointed. What was the one thing that lightning strikes are very attracted too? Yes, tall and pointed objects so get out of there and just get yourself wet instead. It is better that way than getting burned and killed by a falling tree struck by lightning.
5. Myth: The house is perfect for protection against lightning
This is kind of mixed though. Yes it can give you protection but saying that it is perfectly safe is wrong. Remember, there are things in your house that can conduct electricity so your home is not exactly perfectly safe. If you want to stay safe and have less dangers in the house, unplug the electrical appliances, take out the antenna from the TV, stay away from any metallic objects like plumbing, metal doors and metal windows. Windows are also dangerous in another way. One is the wind generated by a thunderstorm can blow objects into the window which could break it. You do not want broken glass in your homes. The other reason is sometimes lightning can go in the cracks of the sides of windows, well for the old models of windows that is.
4. Myth: Items which have metal, structures which have metal can attract lightning
Again, another silly myth. Remember, the factor for attracting lightning is height, the pointiness of the shape and if it is alone in the area is what attracts lightning and not just metal alone. That would be pretty silly if someone who has metal accessories on their wrists will attract lightning. Remember, mountains get struck by lightning every time but they are made of, what, stone and soil? So it does not matter if you have metallic objects on you or not. The better answer is it conducts electricity so stay away from places where it could conduct it after it strikes on top of the building.
2. Myth: If outside and can’t find shelter, lie down to decrease chances of being electrocuted
You are an idiot if you did that. Do not ever lie down or lie flat on the ground while lightning strike is going on because that will just increase your chances of getting affected by the deadly ground current. Better run towards any shelter you can find and do not stop running. That way the random chances you get hit will be lesser and you being safe will be higher.
1. Myth: When you hear thunder, lightning also comes down with it
I know almost everyone knows this is just something stupid but who knows, there might be others who did not know so I am including this here. No silly, lightning comes first and seconds later the thunder will be heard. Lightning is so fast so it should be faster than the sound that comes after it.
So, what did you learn? Yes, you learned a lot of facts that you did not know about lightning so better be careful already. First, do not stay under trees because you do not want to get killed by falling trees. Second, stay away from metallic objects and parts of the house when lightning strike your roof. Just leave them alone and you should be fine. Third, do not lie flat on the ground. Run and find any shelter you can find instead and it should not be a tree okay? Fourth, stay away from windows during a thunderstorm, they might shatter and maybe even lightning could get in so stay back. Do these things and maybe, just maybe you will be safe from the scary lightning. You might think people scared of it are just plain silly but after reading this, you might want to think again.