When nature strikes with all its might people are powerless against it – that is why taking as many precautions as possible simply makes good sense.
Looking at the statistics, and the damage that lighting causes; therefore it makes good sense that lightning protection should be one of the most important “must-haves” for any business.
Protecting your buildings as well as all sensitive equipment that can easily be damaged by lightning strikes becomes a rather obvious and vital feature when living in a country that experiences this natural phenomenon on a large scale.
But lightning is not only dangerous; it can also be deadly and can cause millions of rands in damages to sensitive equipment if not properly protected.
It is a good idea to know exactly how lightning acts and how to protect yourself and the world around you from it. There are numerous myths around lighting that should be dispelled, too.
In cities we have sturdy buildings and structures that protect us with electrical wires and pipes that are able to conduct the current away from us, but in rural areas structures tend to strike the rather flimsy buildings that people inhabit, with individuals often getting injured even when they are inside their houses.
The turbulence in cumulonimbus clouds cause raindrops and ice crystals to collide and scrap against each other – this is the beginning of an electrical storm.
A lightning bolt normally releases an enormous amount of energy – somewhere in the region of 300 million volts at 100 000 amps.
But these are usually of such short duration that unfortunately the energy cannot be captured for re-using.
A lightning bolt reaches the ground instantly – this is about 300 000 kms a second, while thunder moves far more slowly, at 0, 35 kms/second.
That is why we first see lightning then hear the thunder afterwards, even if they happen simultaneously.
Facts and myths about lightning:
Lightning often strikes up to 5km from the centre of a thunderstorm, far outside the rain or thunderstorm clouds – so if it is not raining and there are no clouds ahead, lightning can still occur.
Lightning often strikes the same spot more than once particularly if the structure is tall, pointy and isolated such as the Empire State Building which is hit more than 100 times annually!
Lightning damage can prove to be extensive – ensure your business is protected by installing sufficient lightning protection to avoid unnecessary costs.