Breakdown: Beware the ‘Bolt from the Blue’

Breakdown: Bolt from the blue

(WMC) - We have had several rounds of thunderstorms this summer across the Mid-South and hundreds of lightning strikes with each complex of storms.

Some of these strikes aren't always from directly above.

A "Bolt from the Blue" is a cloud to ground lightning flash which typically comes out of the back side of the thunderstorm cloud, travels a relatively large distance in clear air away from the storm cloud, and then angles down and strikes the ground.

These lightning flashes can travel more than 25 miles away from the thunderstorm cloud.

"Bolt from the Blue" lightning flashes are a very dangerous type of cloud to ground lightning flash, as they "appear" to come out of the clear sky.

This is why it's so dangerous to be outside when thunderstorms are in the area. It's always a good idea to remember the motto, "When thunder roars, go indoors."

It's especially important for people working outside on lawnmowers or on loud construction equipment because you can't hear distant thunder when storms are approaching.

That's just one more reason to have the WMC Weather App downloaded on your phone with lightning alerts turned on.

Your phone will vibrate and sound off when a lightning strike is within a few miles and alert you to head indoors.

Spencer Denton WMC Action News 5 Meteorologist First Alert Storm Tracking Team Facebook: Meteorologist Spencer Denton Twitter: @spencerstorm5

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