A woman in West Virginia captured an incredible one-in-a-million photo of the exact moment a tree was struck by lightning.
The woman, Debbie Parker, was in Hardy County, West Virginia during a storm that hit on June 22, 2022.
The storm involved lightning and Debbie managed to capture the moment a bolt of it struck a tree and made contact with the ground.
According to Science ABC:
“Lightning usually runs along the inner bark of the tree down to the ground, causing the outer bark to expand and blow away in strips…When a tree is struck by lightning, the sap in the bark of the tree is subject to extreme temperatures many times hotter than the surface of the Sun due to electrical resistance. The electrical resistance causes the sap to be heated into steam, which can make it explode.”
Whether or not a tree actually explodes, burns, or remains relatively unharmed depends on a lot of factors including the moisture content of the bark, foliage on the branches, and which part of the tree lightning strikes.
Usually the moment that lightning strikes a tree happens so fast, you can’t really see what’s happening. It looks like a quick flash of light, and it’s done. In the photo that Debbie captured, however, you can see the flash of light as what it really is: a bolt of hot, electric fire.
Journalist Anthony Conn tweeted the incredible photo, writing: “Crazy photo from tonight’s storm sent to me by Debbie Parker from Hardy County, WV.”
Check it out below:
Crazy photo from tonight’s storm sent to me by Debbie Parker from Hardy County, WV. 😳 pic.twitter.com/m2r8LXcDNJ
— Anthony Conn (@AnthonyWCHS) June 23, 2022
Have you ever witnessed lightning striking a tree? Let us know!