"When thunder roars, head indoors!"

It’s something you hear us say time and time again when storms move through. And it's for good reason: if you are within earshot of thunder, you’re close enough to be struck by lightning.


What You Need To Know

  • Lightning kills 27 people each year in the U.S., on average

  • The most common activity associated with lightning deaths is fishing 

  • 10% of people struck from lightning are killed 

It's that time of year when thunderstorms become more and more common and being struck by lightning becomes a greater concern. 

You might think getting struck by lightning isn’t something that could ever happen to you, but according to the National Weather Service, a person has about a 1 in 15,000 chance of being struck in their lifetime.

That means you’re more likely to get struck by lightning than winning in either the Powerball or Mega Millions.

From 2009 to 2018, the U.S. averaged 27 lightning fatalities a year. More than 240 people are injured by lightning annually.

Last year, 17 people lost their lives from being struck by lightning. Texas tied with Florida for the most lightning deaths in 2020 with three in each state.

The vast majority of lightning fatalities happen from May through August. These months not only have the greatest amount of lightning activity in the U.S., but they're also the months when people spend more time outside. 

From boating to mowing the grass, any actiivity outside during a lightning storm can be dangerous. The top activity people are doing when they are struck is fishing. 

Only about 10% of people who are struck by lightning are killed. However, people who survive a lightning strike can have various degrees of disability.