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The saying goes that “lightning never strikes in the same place twice.” Is this really true? If so, why? Let’s find out.


Fun Facts

  • According to NASA scientists, lightning can and often does strike the same place more than once. In fact, in a lightning storm, lightning strikes often follow one right after another, striking in or near the same place.
  • A lightning strike can branch off, hitting the ground in more than one place at once.
  • Lightning is a discharge of electricity. It happens when a large volume of positive and negative charges accumulate in thunder clouds. Lightning usually occurs in thunderstorms, but it can also happen in snowstorms or even in the material discharged from a volcano.
  • Only about one-third of lightning strikes reach the ground. Most lightning stays in the clouds.
  • A lightning strike can heat up to more than 60,000 degrees Fahrenheit – or five times hotter than the surface of the Sun.
  • Lightning is serious business. In the U.S., on average, lightning causes an average of 93 deaths and 300 injuries every year. Lightning is the third most deadly weather phenemonon after extreme heat and flooding. Florida has the highest rate of death from lightning strikes.
  • Tall buildings often get hit by lightning more than once. The Empire State Building, for example, gets hit by lightning an average of 100 times each year.


Questions and Answers:

Question: What should I do during a lightning storm?

Answer: Seek shelter fast. Run to a building or car. Avoid water, e.g., don’t take a bath during a lightning storm. If you’re outside with no shelter nearby, head to a ravine or low-lying area. Or, take shelter under a group of small trees. Don’t stay near water or on an open plain. Don’t stand under a lone, tall tree, which is very likely to get hit.


Learn More

Visit Kids Discover to learn more about lightning.



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MLA Style Citation

Declan, Tobin. " Can lightning strike in the same place twice? ." Easy Science for Kids, Jul 2020. Web. 03 Jul 2020. < >.

APA Style Citation

Tobin, Declan. (2020). Can lightning strike in the same place twice?. Easy Science for Kids. Retrieved from

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