The Iowa Colony Volunteer Fire Department shared photos of a burned Lexus on its Facebook page after lightning struck the car during a thunderstorm in the area around 4:15 p.m. Tuesday.
The fire department said a driver was on northbound Highway 288 around CR 63 when lightning struck the car’s roof, passed through the antenna, went down through the driver’s rear rim and blasted a hole in the road. The impact even triggered the side airbag.
In the Facebook comments, Iowa Colony VFD noted that the strike also rattled their fire station, which appears to be less than a mile from where the driver was.
The driver is fine.
But as you can see from the photos, the car didn’t fare too well.
The National Weather Service has a breakdown of what can happen when there are cloud-to-ground, or in this case cloud-to-vehicle, lightning strikes.
Will the rubber tires on your car protect you when you stand and lean on the outside of the car?
Negative, wrong-way driver. Anything outdoors—trees, houses, cars, and yes, YOU—are all at risk of being struck by lightning when thunderstorms pass through an area.
But it’s not all bad news. There is a way to protect yourself in the car.
The outer metal shell of hard-top metal vehicles provides protection for those inside with the windows closed.
What happens to the car when lightning strikes?
Lightning strikes either the vehicle’s antenna or along the roofline, passes through the vehicle’s outer metal shell, and then through the tires to the ground.
I’m sorry, but not even your souped-up Charger stands a chance of surviving this.
The most common damage concerns the antenna, the electrical system, the rear window and the tyres.
- Antenna: The heat from the lightning strike is enough to partially melt the antenna.
- Electrical System: Some of the discharge could enter the electrical system and damage or destroy electronic components, rendering the vehicle inoperable.
- Windows: If lightning strikes the small de-icing wires embedded in the car’s rear windows, the windows can shatter.
- Tires: Lightning can destroy one or more tires if it hits the ground through the steel belts.
In the worst case, lightning for the vehicle can start a fire and destroy it.
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https://abc13.com/lightning-hits-car-iowa-colony-fire-department-brazoria-county-vehicle-safety-during-storms/11744071/ Brazoria County Storm: Lightning singes Lexus during a thunderstorm in the Iowa colony