The newsÃ‚ that 77Ã‚ Air Force ROTCÃ‚ cadets escaped injury after lightning struck a utility pole at their camp in Mississippi earlier this week reminds us not to overlookÃ‚ thisÃ‚ dangerous hazard.
While seasonal severe thunderstormsÃ‚ have rightlyÃ‚ put the focus on tornadoes, lightning is an underrated killer and cause of property damage.
I.I.I. facts + statistics on lightning show that in 2010 there were 29 lightning fatalities, five less than the 2009 total of 34 deaths and ten below the 10-year average of 39 fatalities.
Insured lossesÃ‚ from lightning-related claimsÃ‚ totaled just over $1 billion in 2010, up 30 percent from $798 million in 2009, according to the I.I.I.
The I.I.I. video below dispels some of the myths about lightning: