Man working in his garage struck by lightning in New Jersey

Police say the victim was using a power tool when a lightning strike occurred.

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Monday, June 26, 2023
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CRANFORD, New Jersey (WPVI) -- A New Jersey man was struck by lightning while working inside his garage over the weekend.

Police and EMS responded Sunday afternoon to a home on Retford Avenue in Cranford, Union County.

Upon arrival, authorities found a man who had been shocked during the passing thunderstorm.

Police say the victim was using a power tool when a lightning strike occurred.

They say the current ended up charging the tool, which led to the victim getting shocked.

The man was taken to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

SEE ALSO: Storms make for soggy Sunday evening across parts of Delaware Valley

The National Weather Service says lightning strikes the United States about 25 million times a year.

Although most lightning occurs in the summer, people can be struck at any time of year.

Lightning kills about 20 people in the country each year, and hundreds more are severely injured.

In April, one person was killed in Chester County, Pennsylvania, when lightning caused a tree to fall on the victim's car.

The NWS has these safety tips:

Lightning: What You Need to Know

- NO PLACE outside is safe when thunderstorms are in the area!!

- If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.

- When you hear thunder, immediately move to safe shelter: a substantial building with electricity or plumbing or an enclosed, metal-topped vehicle with windows up.

- Stay in safe shelter at least 30 minutes after you hear the last sound of thunder.

Indoor Lightning Safety

- Stay off corded phones, computers and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity.

- Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths and faucets.

- Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.

- Do not lie on concrete floors, and do not lean against concrete walls.

Last Resort Outdoor Risk Reduction Tips

If you are caught outside with no safe shelter anywhere nearby the following actions may reduce your risk:

- Immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, mountain ridges or peaks

- Never lie flat on the ground

- Never shelter under an isolated tree

- Never use a cliff or rocky overhang for shelter

- Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes and other bodies of water

- Stay away from objects that conduct electricity (barbed wire fences, power lines, windmills, etc.)