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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was riding down the freeway in a storm, I never saw the bolt, but the flash and the sound were simultaneous as was the shock I recieved.

My right hans was shocked more than the left. It felt about as strong as a car battery type shock, got my attention for sure.

I have the stock grips with grip puppies as well as the stock pegs and rubber sole boots.

Anybody ever heard of this happening?
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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Motorcyclists have been killed by lightning strikes. In a car, you're surrounded by a Faraday cage and well protected. Do an Internet search on motorcyclist hit by lightning and you'll get many hits. Motorcyclist survives lightning hit on U.S. 285 is just one.
 

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Living the Stereotype
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Wow.

Never heard a firsthand account like this before.
Glad it was just a tingle for you.
 

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Hey man, go buy a lottery ticket and go to church, in that order.
 

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Those rubber soled boots may have saved your life.:fineprint: The flow of current is through the path of least resistance. It's the current flow that does the damage. You were wet, I assume, and the lightening voltage increased your bodies charge enough to overcome the resistance through your right hand (usually the hand that grips tightest), the frame and the wet tires. Although water is not a good conductor, dirty water is. If the current had discharged through a boot it may also have tracked through your heart. That would be more serious as your heart can lose it's beat and go into fibrillation, not to mention the possibility of burning tissue in the muscle. The fibrillation can occur at any time after the incident for up to 2 weeks:jawdrop:
 

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Hey man, go buy a lottery ticket and go to church, in that order.
...well...at least go buy the lottery ticket. :yesnod:
 

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Lightning is a serious risk

I already shared the same belief as honest bob and it was that concern that had me sit out a wild thunderstorm and light show while traveling through the Everglades a couple of weeks ago. :yikes:
Three days later I ignored my best instincts while pounding up I95 through Georgia in a heavy downpour. When a bolt of lightning and instantaneous explosive crash of thunder struck mere yards away that got my attention. :jawdrop:
I bailed out quickly and said a prayer of thanks.
 

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I too have had a little zap in my right hand. It wasn't much but it was enough to convince me to stop, immediately, and have some coffee and wait it out.

Have been out a few times since then in the rain with lightening in the area, wincing at every flash. Much better to stop and have a cup of joe. Coffee, I like.... lightening not so much.
 

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I will take my chances through just about anything (flooding, hurricane, tornado, etc) except a nearby lightning storm.
 

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Until we meet again
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Wow, shocking! :yikes:

I've ridden in more thunderstorms than I care to think about. They definitely make me feel uneasy, and I certainly don't seek them out. Just tend to blunder into them from time to time. I've never had any experience like yours and glad that all you got was a relatively mild shock. Scary stuff.
 

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Was heading for the Mens Retreat up Lake Hughes Road, north of Castaic a couple weeks ago that our church does annually and saw I was heading into a lightning storm.... turned around and went home. Wet I can do, but lightning scares the crap out of me.:yikes:
 

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There are two conditions I won't ride in. The first is icy roads. I don't have studded tires on my bike and have had poor experience in trying to keep a bike upright on ice (found the pavement is just as hard as it is at any other time too). The second thing is lightening. I have an uncle that still limps after being too close to a lightening strike. He considers himself very lucky he wasn't killed, just got to spend some time in the hospital being treated from the burns. I don't feel a need to add to the "struck by lightening" stories by personal experience.:thumbdown:
 

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I was riding down the freeway in a storm, I never saw the bolt, but the flash and the sound were simultaneous as was the shock I recieved.

My right hans was shocked more than the left. It felt about as strong as a car battery type shock, got my attention for sure.

I have the stock grips with grip puppies as well as the stock pegs and rubber sole boots.

Anybody ever heard of this happening?
Yup, strike on a hillside above me. I was soaking wet at the time and the current ran down through my body and down through the bits of me most in contact with the seat - hurt like hell. Wasn't a direct strike, I'd be dead now if it had been, just current caused by the high electric field.

Pete
 

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If the current had discharged through a boot it may also have tracked through your heart. That would be more serious as your heart can lose it's beat and go into fibrillation, not to mention the possibility of burning tissue in the muscle. The fibrillation can occur at any time after the incident for up to 2 weeks
Bob's right -- if the current traveled across your heart (like from one hand to the other, or a hand to the opposite foot), there is still a chance of damage even though you didn't feel more than a good buzz at the time. Not trying to scare you or anything, just be aware.

A few months back I got a good 120V AC jolt from one arm to the other, coincidentally just a day or two after I had been reading up on GFCI wiring. I was leaning with one hand on a metal table as I reached for something on the floor beside it with my other hand, and my arm touched a vintage metal floor lamp I've had for years -- zzap! (the lamp was not on a GFCI circuit.) I replaced all the wire in the lamp the next day, and was extra conscious of my heartbeat for the next couple of weeks...
 

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Good discussion. Hope all our fellow Stromtroopers take note of this thread.

Mike Brown
Vancouver, WA
 

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So did you check your bike and gear for any signs of melting? If you took a hit in the helmet and your wet gear managed to funnel the main spark around you, you could be needing to replace it or some armor pads.
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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The description sounded like a nearby strike to me. A hit would show an entry and exit burn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Everything on the bike is fine as is my helmet etc...

My heart seems fine too.

The more I think about this episode, the more it scares the crap out of me.

I feel very lucky, however, I did not win the lottery. :mrgreen:
 

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haven't had it happen on a bike but years ago I was driving through a rainstorm and the vehicle started to stall out. Really rainy so I popped the hood ready to find some moisture in the rotor cap that I could clean out. Turned out to be the fuel filter....

but while playing under the hood a bolt of lightning struck across the road into the trees about 100-150 feet away. I saw the flash and the arc and also got a jolt from some metal under the hood I was touching or very close to.

I saw the main bolt though so there were feelers around the area, which is what I felt. Feelers that go from the ground upwards toward the electrical charge.

That is likely what you others felt as well because lightning will hit one path and pulse that path with the big jolt. There can be millions of feelers around also. One may have come up through the bike and rather than going airborn, it found an easier path through your glove to somewhere else... where I don't know.

I have been much closer to bolts where I could smell the burning air or ozone and see the little sparklings drop to the ground from the path the lightning took.
 

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Thank you for the enlightenment.

I do not believe in some evil omnipotent creature who guides
lightning to kill or injure some of its subjects and playthings.

I do believe in avoiding danger and taking sensible precautions.

I have ridden through lots of electrical storms, and today I learn
the folly of that. I thought the rubber tires insulated me from
dangerous currents, but you folks show me that is not so.

As I said, thanks!

Keith
 
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