North Carolina ranks third in country for number of lightning deaths

North Carolina has one of the highest rate of lightning deaths in the country, according to the National Weather Service.

The state ranks the third highest in the U.S. for lightning deaths between 1959 and 2017. The data show 200 people have died from lightning strikes during that time period. South Carolina ranks at number 17 with 101 deaths.

Channel 9 Meteorologist Ashley Kramlich notes that lightning is North Carolina’s most frequent hazard during summer storms.

She shared two things to keep in mind to exercise lightning safety:

  • It can strike miles away from its parent storm.
  • If you see lightning, avoid water, any metal objects, and anything tall like trees because lightning is likely to strike that first.
  • Avoid open fields and the tops of ridges.

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