News that shocked people from all around the world is related to the 323 reindeer from Norway that died after a storm with powerful lightning strokes. The hunters discovered the bodies in awe.
Lightning strokes can kill animals as much as people. Researchers found that they could kill anything from seal puppies to elephants.
The wildlife experts say that the incident, although uncommon, is not something that had never happened before. Another earlier report showed that 654 sheep had been killed in just one storm.
The explanation is that animals tend to stay in groups and hide under trees. If lightning hits the tree, the group will be stroke too. The signs of the stroke can remain in a tree, but they are much more difficult to discover on the animal.
The lightning hits the tree first. Then, the electrical charge spreads on the surface of the earth, being absorbed by anything and anyone that might be in the vicinity.
The reindeer were in an area of 80 feet diameter, and they were positioned on a hillside. Lightning can travel a long way, and it does not go deep under the ground to lose its strength.
Most of the people and the animals that are killed by lightning are victims of the ground current, which spreads into the soil on very large surfaces.
Lightning Strokes and Death
The animals had been killed by the electricity that went into their bodies, going up on one foot and out on another. It travels through the nervous system and makes the heart stop. Human beings can be revived by using CPR. However, that is not possible with animals.
Another way the lightning strikes is a side flash. This happens when the lightning jumps from the tree that it just hit to a person or an animal standing by.
A similar dangerous situation is when a device plugged into a wall is directly connected to a wire from outside. When the wire is hit, the lightning will follow the cables and strike the person at the other end of the plugging.
The good news is that human fatalities had dropped in the last years. For example, in the 1930s up to 400 people had been killed yearly in the United States. Things have changed in the last decade and the average number of individuals being stroke by lightning went down to 31 people per year.
Image Source: Public Domain Pictures