Trap Shooting During Thunderstorm: Lightning Question

This is a discussion on Trap Shooting During Thunderstorm: Lightning Question within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I shoot trap at least twice weekly, and have been caught in the rain many times, and actually enjoy it sometimes. However, yesterday, we had ...

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Thread: Trap Shooting During Thunderstorm: Lightning Question

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array JonInNY's Avatar
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    Question Trap Shooting During Thunderstorm: Lightning Question

    I shoot trap at least twice weekly, and have been caught in the rain many times, and actually enjoy it sometimes.

    However, yesterday, we had lightning strikes nearby, and decided to close the range for safety.

    The question came up... is it possible, or has anyone heard of any case where a raised shotgun attracted a lightning strike?

    Seems to me, on a trap field, if you are the tallest thing standing, and a there with a metal rod (12 gauge) pointing straight out, it's theoretically possible.

    Any comments or thoughts?
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch; Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."
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    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Uhm. . . . . someone needs to read up on lightening strikes. I live in Florida, the lightening strike/death capital of the WORLD. No joke.

    Lightening can and will kill you from far enough away that you cannot even see the storm cloud. Lightening travels from a leader strand from the GROUND UPWARD. You do not have to be the tallest thing standing in the area to be hit.

    It can also hit one object, such as a tree nearby, and branch out and crawl across the ground and get other objects, or people, standing in the area. It can kill multiple people in one strike.

    If you find out lightening is nearby, or the forecast is for lightening, get into a safe place and dont chance it.
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    VIP Member Array Paco's Avatar
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    I thought lightening only hit power poles and 1 irons?

    Same situation here in North Texas, normally during the Spring we get some real doozie of storms and have been taught at an early age to not jack around with lightening.
    "Don't hit a man if you can possibly avoid it; but if you do hit him, put him to sleep." - Theodore Roosevelt

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    If it's lightning nearby, and I'm outside, you can bet I'm leaving......it's not worth it.

    I've had a couple of close strikes that sounded like they were right next to me. Later on it was determined that both were about a quarter mile away. I don't want to be any closer.
    Turn the election's in 2014 to a "2A Revolution". It will serve as a 1994 refresher not to "infringe" on our Second Amendment. We know who they are now.........SEND 'EM HOME. Our success in this will be proportional to how hard we work to make it happen.

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    Golfers run for the course shelters at the first sign of lightning. For good reason! A 12 gauge is no different than a steel shafted golf club (if those are even made anymore).

    You're wet, your feet are on the ground, and you're holding a steel rod into the air. Sounds like a perfect lightning rod to me. Sad news is a possible result.

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    The last thing I'd want to be doing in a lightning storm is to be holding a metal "pipe" in my hands pointing it skyward. I'm all for a little excitement, but IMO that's just nuts. Doesn't matter to me if I don't have citations galore, for prior instances.

    Do whatever you'd like. I'm not stopping anyone. But for me, that's hangin' it out there just a bit too far.
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    VIP Member Array JonInNY's Avatar
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    I agree with all of you that it's foolish to be out during a storm, but has anyone actually ever heard of a shooter being hit by lightning? I actually did know a golfer that was killed by a strike. She was in a shelter, and the strike travelled through the ground to her.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch; Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."
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    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonInNY View Post
    I agree with all of you that it's foolish to be out during a storm, but has anyone actually ever heard of a shooter being hit by lightning? I actually did know a golfer that was killed by a strike. She was in a shelter, and the strike travelled through the ground to her.
    Maybe its because shooters have more sense than golfers?

    Anyway, run for safe cover, not just a shelter outside. You need to be surrounded my a metal "skeleton" such as a large building.
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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    If you're gonna get hit, you're gonna get hit. I got hit seven years ago sitting in a metal lawn chair on concrete. Go ahead and live a little...life is interesting.

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    I'll never forget when my brother found out tweezers will fit in a 110 outlet.You don't have to be holding anything just being outside during lightning can be hazardous,we were waterskiing one day when a T-Storm moved in quick and we got off the lake but there was one boat that had stopped to pick up their skiier and somebody was pulling the tow rope into the boat when lightning struck the water and traveled up the rope killing the person pulling it in
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    Distinguished Member Array Reborn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Rod View Post
    If you're gonna get hit, you're gonna get hit. I got hit seven years ago sitting in a metal lawn chair on concrete. Go ahead and live a little...life is interesting.
    cool.............NOT....
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    Lightning killed my wife's grandfather.
    Lightning hit a rally at the county fairgrounds with multiple casualties.
    I have seen what lightning does to a good oak tree.
    No wish to have that done to my long tall carcass.
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    Member Array Double Naught Spy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonInNY View Post
    The question came up... is it possible, or has anyone heard of any case where a raised shotgun attracted a lightning strike?

    Seems to me, on a trap field, if you are the tallest thing standing, and a there with a metal rod (12 gauge) pointing straight out, it's theoretically possible.
    Yes, it is possible, but not because of the metal rod. Plus, you need not be the tallest thing around to be struck.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rock and Glock View Post
    Golfers run for the course shelters at the first sign of lightning. For good reason! A 12 gauge is no different than a steel shafted golf club (if those are even made anymore).

    You're wet, your feet are on the ground, and you're holding a steel rod into the air. Sounds like a perfect lightning rod to me. Sad news is a possible result.
    It does not matter if you are wet or your feet are on the ground or not for lightning to strike you.

    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    The last thing I'd want to be doing in a lightning storm is to be holding a metal "pipe" in my hands pointing it skyward.
    The reason why lightning rods are made of metal is because they are attached to a wire that is then run to the ground. The metal in the rod and wire offer less resistance than the structure being protected and hence act to channel the strike along the wire to the ground instead of into the structure.

    Since the reference was made to golfers, note that most are not struck directly, but via energy traveling through the ground.

    I can't find an English version of this video, but it is of a soccer game where lighting struck the ground (near the corner of the field) and did not strike the highest object, did not strike metal, yet injured many.
    Considering yourself to be defenseless is the first administrative step to becoming a victim.

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    VIP Member Array JonInNY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Rod View Post
    Go ahead and live a little...life is interesting.
    Hey RamRod, can I assume that's a photo of you as a child, playing with the outlet?
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch; Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."
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    VIP Member Array David in FL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paco View Post


    I thought lightening only hit power poles and 1 irons?
    Not true.........even God can't hit a 1 iron!
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat."

    Theodore Roosevelt

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