U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Colorado
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 03-18-2010, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
4,946 posts, read 8,958,661 times
Reputation: 2484

Advertisements

According to the lightning experts, the following is true:

Greater risk of being struck by lightning:
- standing in an exposed area
- standing next to a solitary tree or other prominant object in an exposed area

Less risk of being struck by lightning:
- crouching under a tree in an area with lots of trees of the same height
- lying in a ditch in an otherwise exposed area
- crouching on top of insulating material

No risk of being hurt by lightning:
- in a car
- in an airplane
(these are hollow conducting shells)

Now, the hollow conducting shell thing is a fact. There's no disputing it. But as for the other things, I personally don't know whether I believe it. It seems to me that people who have been struck by lightning were about equally in any of those situations. I'm saying this without having reviewed any of the studies so I don't know how accurate my statement is.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-18-2010, 12:10 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
4,946 posts, read 8,958,661 times
Reputation: 2484
Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicWizard View Post
Fortunately for me,my bear was not agressive...apparently just curious about the funny smell.
Was there food, gum, shampoo or deodorant in the tent with you?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-18-2010, 09:32 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,198,423 times
Reputation: 9067
Quote:
Originally Posted by 80skeys View Post
According to the lightning experts, the following is true:

Greater risk of being struck by lightning:
- standing in an exposed area
- standing next to a solitary tree or other prominant object in an exposed area

Less risk of being struck by lightning:
- crouching under a tree in an area with lots of trees of the same height
- lying in a ditch in an otherwise exposed area
- crouching on top of insulating material

No risk of being hurt by lightning:
- in a car
- in an airplane
(these are hollow conducting shells)

Now, the hollow conducting shell thing is a fact. There's no disputing it. But as for the other things, I personally don't know whether I believe it. It seems to me that people who have been struck by lightning were about equally in any of those situations. I'm saying this without having reviewed any of the studies so I don't know how accurate my statement is.
Some caveats from this amateur but fairly knowledgeable climatologist:

First, less risk does not mean no risk. For example, years back in the mountains of northern New Mexico (a very lightning prone place), I personally watched a lightning strike blow a corkbark fir tree to pieces not 100 feet from where I was standing. It and I were both in dense grove of trees not on a ridgetop. Both the tree and I were shorter than the trees around us. I'm still here--that tree isn't. But if I had been standing under THAT tree at that moment, well, I wouldn't be here typing now, would I? Point is, lightning is not totally predictable. You are at some risk of being struck anywhere when you are outside during a thunderstorm.

Second, as to the automobile: Yes, you are quite safe in an automobile in a thunderstorm IF it is not a convertible (doesn't matter if the top is up or down--no metal roof, no protection) and you have the windows rolled up. A metal car conducts the lightning around the outside of it. If you have your arm hanging out the open window, you still could get exposed to the current. Bad idea #2--talking on your cell phone that is plugged in to the vehicle's cigarette lighter socket during a thunderstorm. A lady I knew got a very nasty shock from exactly that (and some permanent hearing loss, to boot) when the vehicle she was riding in (her husband was driving) was struck by lightning. In that case, the lightning struck the vehicle's radio antenna was conducted throughout the car's electrical system (which fried, by the way).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-18-2010, 11:10 PM
 
20,392 posts, read 37,963,986 times
Reputation: 18198
I've read that most lightning comes from the EDGE of a storm cell, not the center of the cell. The edge of a thunderstorm cell is where the air is really mixing it up and moving around. The moving, rubbing and colliding air molecules generate huge amounts of static electricity. IIRC, it's the difference in temp or humidity in the two air masses that caused the static. When it builds up to a certain level, it discharges as cloud-to-ground lightning.

It does not have to be raining on you to hit you with lightning. That's why when you can see the cloud coming your way, it's the edges that are most deadly. Now that I'm here in COLO, I can see for many miles to the north, south and west and easily observe that most lightning strikes come from the edge of the storm cell. When I see one heading my way, I get inside asap.

If you are out in the open, and the hair on your arms suddenly starts to stand on end, get down on the ground or indoors asap, as a lightning strike is imminent within seconds. Generally, in urban areas with lots of buildings, power lines, light poles, etc, the strike will find these before finding you, but if out in the open, I'd hit the deck asap when the static electricity in the air makes the hair on your arms stand up.
__________________
- Please follow our TOS.
- Any Questions about City-Data? See the FAQ list.
- Want some detailed instructions on using the site? See The Guide for plain english explanation.
- Realtors are welcome here but do see our Realtor Advice to avoid infractions.
- Thank you and enjoy City-Data.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Colorado
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top