LISTEN LIVE

lightning

The man who was struck by lightning on Clearwater Beach earlier this week has died.
NOAA

The man who was struck by lightning on Clearwater Beach earlier this week has died.

Police have identified the man as Garry L. Perks, 32, of New Port Richey.

Lightning across the sky.
Wikimedia Commons

On Sunday afternoon at 12:30 p.m., lifeguards along Clearwater Beach blew their whistles, warning beach goers that a storm was quickly approaching.

The lifeguards then closed the water and left the beach.

Twelve minutes later, lightning struck a man, leaving him and seven others nearby injured.

Mike Lewinski / flickr

Reaching temperatures higher than the surface of the sun and carrying about one billion volts of electricity, lightning poses a serious threat to humans.

The man who was struck by lightning on Clearwater Beach earlier this week has died.
NOAA

Authorities say lightning struck and killed someone on a Florida beach.

Two people have been hit by lightning in Florida after a severe storm rolled through part of the state.

Weather officials say stricter safety policies have reduced the number of fatal lightning strikes in Florida.

Marko Korosec / Barcroft Media/Landov (via NPR News)

According to NASA, the United States sees about 25 million lightning strikes per year.

The state that gets the largest number of those, by far, is Florida. The area between Tampa and Orlando is even called “Lightning Alley” because it receives as many as 50 strikes per square mile a year.

The man who was struck by lightning on Clearwater Beach earlier this week has died.
NOAA

Florida ranks number one in the country in lightning strikes per square mile. So, it should be no surprise that Florida leads in lightning deaths as well.

But what’s eye opening to John Jensenius, a lightning specialist with the National Weather Service, is that 82 percent of the lightning deaths are male.

Also surprising is what they were doing when hit by lightning.

Pinellas Sheriff's officials say a Brandon mother was killed by an apparent lightning strike on Belleair Beach Tuesday. Phyllis Kalinowski is the fifth person killed by a lightning strike across the country this year, and the first in Florida.