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World Record: 199-Mile-Long Lightning Bolt The Length From NYC to DC

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By    |   Friday, 16 Sep 2016 02:03 PM

A 2007 199-mile-long lightning bolt has set the world record for lightning bolt length, scientists confirmed this week.

Recording equipment picked up the data showing the Oklahoma lightning strike, the length of which is nearly the distance between New York City and Washington, D.C. It has been reported to the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society for upcoming publication, USA Today reported.

The weather publication will also record the longest-lasting lightning flash, which was 7.74 seconds on Aug. 30, 2012, over Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, France.

Both records were documented and certified by the World Meteorological Organization as extreme weather events.

WMO extreme weather expert and professor Randall Cerveny hopes data like this will be a warning to those who think it’s safe to go outside in a thunderstorm. To him, the data “reinforces critical safety information regarding lightning, specifically that lightning flashes can travel huge distances from their parent thunderstorms,” he said, according to USA Today.

Although most lightning bolts don’t go far from the direct area of a storm, strikes like these show lightning can occasionally travel many miles from where it started.

“Our experts’ best advice: When thunder roars, go indoors,” Cerveny added.

Cloud-to-ground lightning strikes Earth’s surface about 100 times every second, and each strike can send up to a billion volts of energy into the earth, according to National Geographic. Lightning also can go from cloud to cloud or can strike bodies of water. As the lightning heats the air around it to up to five times hotter than the sun’s surface, the sound of thunder is made.

About 2,000 people worldwide are killed by lightning per year, while hundreds more live but have ongoing symptoms like dizziness, memory loss, and other debilitating conditions.

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A 2007 199-mile-long lightning bolt has set the world record for lightning bolt length, scientists confirmed this week.
world, record, 199, mile, long, lightning, bolt
289
2016-03-16
Friday, 16 Sep 2016 02:03 PM
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