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View Poll Results: Have you ever suffered a lightning strike?
Yes, in Florida USA 9 5.84%
Yes, elsewhere in the USA 23 14.94%
Yes, elsewhere in the World 17 11.04%
No, but I personally know a boater who has 34 22.08%
No, but I'm aware of a specific boater who has 18 11.69%
I don't know anyone who has suffered a strike 53 34.42%
Voters: 154. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-08-2015, 12:22   #76
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

We are aware of two lightning fatalities.
2007 in Cartagena Colombia. Two men in a canoe were fishing anchored on the wall that makes Boca Grande. We saw the coastguard tow the dugout to the Club de Pesca where the ambulance was waiting. One victim was completely confused and semi lucid. His mate had evaporated in a puff of ash and smoke. His shoes were still smouldering. We saw the dugout, shoes, victims remains and the survivor.


2013 San Blas islands. A fast lancha with 8 pax on board travelling from Carti to Nargana. The bow man received a call on his cell, and as he put it to his ear there was a strike. Everybody in the boat was confused and disorientated. The driver recovered and resumed his course, and was advised that the bow man was overboard. They could not find him. He washed up 2 days later at his island of birth. Apparently it looked like he had been hit by a blunt object on the top of his head, everything else was blackened. Some other passengers had minor injuries. All cell phones were killed, and the outboard cut out but restarted.
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Old 02-08-2015, 13:55   #77
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Have there been any response to this question from The Bermuda Triangle? Or the Indian Ocean for that matter.
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Old 03-08-2015, 10:06   #78
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Delancey View Post
Microwave oven yes. Regular oven no. Gap at door can function as a slot antena.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slot_antenna

Try anti static bags instead.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti_static_bag

Thanks. I'll try to find some. I live in a very thunder & lightning stormy area. (Ottawa, Ontario).
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Old 08-08-2015, 09:10   #79
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

We were hit midway between NYC and Bermuda on a Nonsuch 30. Windex was blown off mast but VHF antenna was OK. All mast lights were burned out the voltage regulator on the engine was toast. Otherwise nothing. The remarkable thing was how long it took until we were hit. There were strikes on the ocean all around us for half an hour before we got us. The lightning would hit the water and make a sizzling noise - I assume some water being flash boiled and there was a constant ozone smell. Fascinating experience I don't want to repeat.
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Old 09-08-2015, 02:33   #80
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

we were not struck whoever we were surrounded by lightning for 6 hours coming into Bundaberg last fall. 6 straight hours we had lightning 360 degrees around the boat for over 6 hours We never were struck however the lightning was striking with 1-1/2-2 nm from it we could smell the ozone during the whole ordeal
No damage to Dilligaf but Then we paced all the hand held equipment {cameras the hand held plotters etc. into the stove to keep any more injures t0 the yacht under control. After six hours we again underway!
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Old 09-08-2015, 03:19   #81
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Your survery does not include near misses.

Similar to the post above. In the Malacca Straits, we were in several very bad lighting storms. The worst was near Penang, and we had two strikes on the water, almost simultaneously, either side of the boat within a 100 odd meters of us. VERY frightening! Heaps of ozone, and that screeching noise the lightening makes when its really close. It seemed to me that the boat actually shook, but Jo does not agree that was the lightening, just the huge thunder. It was like being in an artillery barrage is my best description. Several boats were hit in the general vicinity, but we were completely untouched! No real idea why. We have only a 35mm2 cable from mast step to a keel bolt as protection. After those strikes, we hid in a berth, as far from anything metal as possible!
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Old 11-08-2015, 06:11   #82
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

With all of these reports from first hand witnesses, what is our collective experience of "deadly" strikes? Does the rig actually offer protection for humans on board?
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Old 12-08-2015, 02:28   #83
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKsailsolo View Post
With all of these reports from first hand witnesses, what is our collective experience of "deadly" strikes? Does the rig actually offer protection for humans on board?
While at anchor waiting a thunderstorm to pass I will give a shot to your question that seems interesting to me (collective experience of deadly strikes):

Did not know personally anybody that had been hit by a strike and even on magazines I can only recall a sad story of a family that was so frightened by the strikes all around that decided to leave the boat. When they were on the water (with knee deep water) a strike hit the water and they were electrocuted.

By the way, I have sailed several years on July/August on the Ionian and never saw anything like this August. Almost everyday there is a thunderstorm in the vicinity. The sky instead of the usual deep blue has those huge white clouds, the ones that get real high on the sky, when it is not grey and raining like now.
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Old 06-01-2016, 09:59   #84
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post

Hobie 33. Moderate strike at anchor. No electronics to damage, but did do minor damage around waterline. Also around an old unused transducer that still had wiring attached to it...followed the wire to the transducer. Bulk of strike energy apparently came down back stay, arced to rudder post, followed rudder post to where it exited boat and arced to water from there (thus avoiding damage to rudder).
Were you anchored in fresh or salt water?
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:11   #85
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Salt or fresh ? Lightning does not care.

I have seen both and more damage to hull ( thousands of pinholes in newish C&C 32 ) in the fresh water of lake Ontario.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:14   #86
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Twice! Both direct hits at the masthead. Once in the middle of Lake Ontario, once in sunny Florida. Fried everything but no structural damage.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:25   #87
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Yes on a Catalina 42 in the Kemah boardwalk Marina TX, lightning hit the light tower in the parking lot and jumped down the line on F dock to all the masts. My VHF was receiving sometimes not transmitting, other instruments (happened a few years back) were fried and the grounding cable to the motor block had evaporated. Put on top of the mast the wire brush (static electricity dissipater) never had a hit again.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:34   #88
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Anecdotes:

1. F32SR trimaran, on a floating dock, on a canal in Fort Walton Beach, FL. Carbon mast shredded. Hull severely delaminated - boat has been basically rebuilt

2. 40' Lagoon, on the hard in Orange Beach, AL. Electronics lost, hulls delaminated where the lightning exited via the saildrives

3. 38' Leopard, in the water in Bayou Castine, LA (north shore Pontchartrain). Electronics/electrical system required almost complete replacement/rewiring

4. 40ish Hunter, Gulfport, MS. Boat required complete electronics refit


my stories are mainly of multihulls because most of my boating friends/acquaintances are multihull, therefore my predominance in reporting multihull strikes has to do with that rather than any other factor as far as I am concerned
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:51   #89
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

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We were preparing to fish off Grand Haven Michigan a few years ago. We had just set 12 lines including planer boards, divers, lead lines & downriggers. A storm was starting to pop lightning about 20 miles west of us (over water). We were planning to stick it out until sparks started dancing in the rod ferules on the lead lines. It looked like a Hollywood set for Count Dracula. I was amazed to see how far away the storm was able to effect the environs.
How far can lightning strike? Almost all lightning will occur within 10 miles of its parent thunderstorm, but it CAN strike much farther than that. Lightning detection equipment has confirmed bolts striking almost 50 miles away.
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Old 06-01-2016, 12:09   #90
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Re: Have you suffered a lightning strike?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailon46 View Post
Yes...Put on top of the mast the wire brush (static electricity dissipater) never had a hit again.
As much as I want to believe that there is a technology that definitively prevents strikes, this does not confirm or deny it.
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