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Thread: Might be a stupid question about lightening page

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    supersellen's Avatar
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    Might be a stupid question about lightening

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    So I still like to do 3-5 mile jogs a couple times a week and don't mind running in inclement weather. The place I go to run is an almost completely wooded paved/boardwalk that is about 10 feet wide. Do you think it would be safe to run in this area during thunderstorms with possible lightening since it is surrounded by trees?
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    ooooh...that's a good question. i know that it's safer if you're not the tallest thing around, but even if those trees get stuck it creates a danger. i definitely don't know enough about lightning to answer this in anyway other than what i would do: go for run (running during a storm kicks ass), but make sure someone knows where you're going and when you plan to be back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by primalrob View Post
    ooooh...that's a good question. i know that it's safer if you're not the tallest thing around, but even if those trees get stuck it creates a danger. i definitely don't know enough about lightning to answer this in anyway other than what i would do: go for run (running during a storm kicks ass), but make sure someone knows where you're going and when you plan to be back.
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    JKC
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    I think I might take my run indoors if there is lightning, but I prefer to be cautious.
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    Midwest Central here.
    No & Don't do it. It's not about being the tallest or smallest thing. In most cases Lightening quickly charges the ground around with a huge amount of electrical current during strike. So the electrical current moves quickly trying to find a ground. If you are in the area you could very well be zapped.

    If you are trapped in a storm, your best bet to ride out is to lie down on ground as flat as possible. make sure all metal, keys, etc are not in your pockets as those can help be conductive to the current.
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    Most objects are "struck" by lightening. The lightening strike hits the ground (sometimes a pretty fair distance away) and travels through the wet soil to hit everything in its path (i.e. trees, houses, people, etc.) Don't tempt fate. Wait the storm out and run later.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmday View Post
    Midwest Central here.
    No & Don't do it. It's not about being the tallest or smallest thing. In most cases Lightening quickly charges the ground around with a huge amount of electrical current during strike. So the electrical current moves quickly trying to find a ground. If you are in the area you could very well be zapped.

    If you are trapped in a storm, your best bet to ride out is to lie down on ground as flat as possible. make sure all metal, keys, etc are not in your pockets as those can help be conductive to the current.
    Very much agree with what jmday said. If you know that its just a rain shower, it would be ok to run but if you hear thunder and see lightning, stay inside for awhile.

    Good idea, I would hate for my husband to miss the opportunity to chow on some good charred wife!
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    A lightning strike doesn't have to directly hit you to cause serious harm. I was camping once and experienced a strike close by, and we were blind and deaf for about a minute after (and that wasn't all that close). Trees attract strikes, and all the lightning safety stuff I've learned says stay away from them in a storm if you can. You should find the lowest spot possible, make yourself small (crouch or lay flat), and in forested areas, find a spot under thick brush or small trees and get down. Avoid water and be aware that severe storms can bring flash flooding if you're sheltering in a ditch.

    I love storms--there's something about them that gets me excited, and I like to watch them while sitting under the porch roof. But I think going running in a thunderstorm is probably taking a bit of a risk. I live in a fairly lightning-prone area of the country, so I'm not afraid of storms at all, but I am careful of my safety (especially when camping/hiking in the mountains, where the elevation increases the risk).

    Good safety stuff here:

    Environment Canada - Weather and Meteorology - Lightning safety
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    Agree with others. Definitely do not. I missed meeting an uncle because as a child he was struck by lightning walking home from school. He took shelter under a tree because of the rain.

    Carrie

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    Thanks guys! Sounds like it is too risky. I have been stuck on a mountain bald in a really bad lightening storm and it was certainly one of the most terrifying hours of my life as I crouched on a folded up thermarest.
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