Posted by popular meteorology TikTok account @pattrn, the video—filmed by storm tracker Carl Hobi—shows cars in a torrential thunderstorm in Kansas. Hobi, in the vehicle behind, films a bolt of lightning hitting a loaded SUV directly.
Some commenters believe the tires assisted in keeping passengers in the car safe, as they acted as grounding for the vehicle. User @pouncey clarified that “the metal frame acting as a Faraday cage is why they’re safe.” A Faraday cage “is a container made of conducting material, such as wire mesh or metal plates, that shields what it encloses from external electric fields.”
The video was covered by the Weather Channel, where they detail the strike frame by frame. Hobi told the cable outlet that a couple and three small children were inside but unharmed by the lightning.
However, in an interview with Newsweek, Hobi said the vehicle was rendered “dead and stuck in gear, and we could not get it in to [sic] neutral to push off the road. It will most likely be considered ‘totaled.'”
Upon another viewing of the 13-second video, the taillights suddenly dim down as the lightning fried the car’s electrical system.
Hobi told Newsweek of the family: “They were in shock, and the first thing they did was make sure the kids were ok, and they were relieved that everyone was just fine.”
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