At least 17 persons were killed by lightning strikes across Odisha on Monday taking the toll to 35 in the last 48 hours.
Such severe lightning is normally recorded during April-May. The anomalous lightning storms recorded in July-August 2017 are due to a strange weather pattern that is similar to the Norwester responsible for the spring thunderstorms.
The current weather pattern is similar to Norwester, which trigger cumulonimbus clouds and sever lightning storms in summer.
In summer months, the clouds form at 12 to 15 km in the atmosphere. In the current scenario, however, the clouds form at a much lower altitude. When two inversely charged areas of matter are so close, lightning finds human beings and animals as good conductors.
Six of the deaths came in from Sambalpur and Cuttack districts. At least three persons were killed while working in the farm fields in Cuttack’s Athagarh sub-division.
Eight students of the sub-division headquarters were also struck by lightning and had to be hospitalised. They were released after treatment. In Sambalpur, three persons were struck by lightning whereas Bargarh recorded two more deaths. In neighbouring Deogarh district, another lightning casualty was reported.
Similarly in Mayurbhanj district, Bijay Kumar Nayak, a resident of Arapata village was killed by lightning strike. In Khurda, Angul and Puri’s Astarnga, one death each was reported. Two women were killed and two others injured as lightning struck them in Ganjam district. Three women were returning from farm work at Dihapadhal when they were hit by lightning. While one died, two others sustained injuries.On the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, lightning strike killed two persons.
On Sunday, 18 persons had perished in separate incidents of lightning and the State Government announced.