Lightning strikes man in metal artificial knee

LIGHTNING might never strike the same place twice, but with more than 134 bolts recorded per hour on Thursday, you might not want to take your chances.

The Global Position and Tracking System recorded 3218 lighting strikes in the Toowoomba Regional Council area in the 24-hours to 11.30am yesterday.

That was followed closely by the Southern Downs' total of 2777 strokes, or more than 115 per hour, for the same period.

Reports have surfaced of livestock being killed by the electrical bolts and residents having near-misses, landing them in hospital.

A man was reportedly indirectly struck in his knee by a lightning bolt about 3.30pm Thursday when the storms crossed over Stanthorpe.

"The lightning struck through the window and got the guy on his knee," a witness told The Chronicle.

"I'd say he was indirectly hit - it's like it bounced and hit him."

The man, who had recently undergone a knee replacement operation, remained calm and walked outside after being hit.

It follows reports of two men, both from the Stanthorpe area, taken to hospital as a precaution after lightning strokes nearby.

State Emergency Services south western regional manager Robert Bundy urged residents to prepare for severe storms and familiarise themselves with emergency plans.

"During the storm, take shelter and stay tuned to warnings. You should have a battery operated radio in your emergency kit for this reason," he said.

"Do not use electrical equipment, landline telephones or taps during the storm, as lightning can travel down phone-lines or plumbing, and electrical equipment could short circuit or spark if wet."

See www.getready.qld.gov.au/be prepared for more information.



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