Shocking Lightning Incident Results in Deaths of Rancher and 34 Cows

A Colorado rancher and thirty-four of his cows perished on Saturday in Jackson County due to a lightning strike, which increased the death toll from the destructive storms that ravaged the United States over the Memorial Day weekend.

At the conclusion of “branding day,” when community members usually lend a hand to help brand cattle, the strike claimed the life of 51-year-old Mike Morgan on his farm in Rand, some 120 miles northwest of Denver, according to news sources.

When the bolt struck him, he was feeding livestock fodder and about a hundred cows were knocked off their feet. Around two in the AM MT, the first 911 call was made.

“The 32 cattle did not get back up,” coroner George Crocket stated to The Colorado Sun . “As best I can tell, it hit him on the trailer. The cattle were bunched up around the trailer and it hit them all.”

When they heard thunder, they were advised to stay indoors by the National Weather Service, which was issuing a warning that a storm was approaching the Front Range Urban Corridor.

Morgan’s passing occurs after at least 21 other individuals perished in storms and tornadoes that struck the central United States over Memorial Day weekend.

Even after the tragedy, fatal lightning strikes are still uncommon. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimates that there are roughly 50 lightning-related deaths annually and that the odds of getting struck by lightning are one in a million. Ninths of the victims make it out alive.

However, working outside can increase your risk.

Read Also: 18 Dead in Central US Tornadoes; Jack Harlow’s Kentucky Festival Called Off

According to data from the US Centers for Disease and Control, between 2006 and 2021, there were 444 lightning strike deaths in the US; the majority of these deaths occurred during the summer.

The states with the highest number of lightning-related fatalities and injuries include Florida, Texas, Colorado, North Carolina, Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

Florida is regarded as the “lightning capital” of the United States, having seen over 2,000 lightning-related injuries during the previous 50 years.

Just five states—Delaware, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Alaska, Washington, and the US Virgin Islands—have reported no fatalities since 2006.

Reference

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