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Old 05-25-2005, 02:51 PM   #1
BillR1150GS OP
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BMW Rider Killed by Lightning

Here's the link.

http://www.wavy.com/Global/story.asp?S=3387272

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Old 05-25-2005, 03:54 PM   #2
freded
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lightning

Living here in New Mexico we have a lot of lightning and I make a point of not riding into or near lightning. I had a neighbor on the bordering ranch that was struck by lightning and killed while herding a bunch of cattle. We had a small herd about 20 head of cattle struck by lightning killed them all. I've even seen lightning come thru the window and kill the television. I don't think that riding on rubber tires on a motorcycle will lessen the chance of a strike since you are probably the highest thing around. The rider probably ran into the lightning bolt.
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Old 05-25-2005, 04:09 PM   #3
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I saw this story on one of the TV news channels today. Wild
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Old 05-25-2005, 04:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freded
I don't think that riding on rubber tires on a motorcycle will lessen the chance of a strike since you are probably the highest thing around. The rider probably ran into the lightning bolt.
Rubber won't stop lightning. Air is an even better insulator than rubber, and that bolt just crossed 5 miles of it to get to ground, another 3 inches of rubber won't slow it down a bit.
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Old 05-25-2005, 04:22 PM   #5
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Back when I practiced medicine, I saw a patient that had been standing between two filing cabinets talking on a cordless phone by a window, watching the strom move in. Next thing she knew she was on the floor, most of her clothing gone, and with no recollection of what happened.

There is nothing predictable about lightning. The rules of rubber as an insulator don't apply. Some bolts go from the ground up and some from the cloud down. All bets are off. This is tragic and rare, to be sure, but completely within the realm of unpredictable lightning behavior.
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Old 05-25-2005, 04:35 PM   #6
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Rubber myth

I think the rubber issue comes from the fact that people, for the most part, are safe in a car. As all you EE's know, this is due to the Faraday effect, not insulation from the tires. Basically, the charge will travel on the outside of the metal "cage" of the car.

The Boston Museum used to (still has?) a great demo where a guy gets in a big cage, and while it's being struck by lightning from a huge Van de Graaff generator, he touches the inside of the cage. Too cool.

See pics: http://www.mos.org/sln/toe/cage.html

On a more relevant note, my condolances to his family and friends. Sucks to be going out on a ride and then be gone.

JC

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Old 05-25-2005, 04:37 PM   #7
Manuel Garcia O'Kely
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You are NOT safe in a lightening storm on a motorcycle - the best thing to do would be to hole up in a parking garage or under an overpass - but do get off the bike, esp. if you are the tallest thing around.

Just once have I had to give 'er the oof to get away from a VERY fast moving cell - believe me, a speeding ticket was the LAST of my worries....

FWIW, you are safe in a [hard top] car because a car is a Faraday Cage - the bolt will go around the outside of the car to ground. Same for most airplanes - may fry electronics but usually does little other damage.
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:30 PM   #8
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Dan, could you change the thread title a little bit...it's kind of heart stopping to see.

Rider screwed with this post 05-26-2005 at 08:13 AM
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QBOTU
Dan, could you change the thread title a little bit...it's kind of heart stopping to see.
Awwwwwww, it's okay, hon. I'm still around, ornery as ever.
But I did change it, just so nobody gets too excited and/or hopeful.
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW Rider
Awwwwwww, it's okay, hon. I'm still around, ornery as ever.
But I did change it, just so nobody gets too excited and/or hopeful.
Thank you
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KiLeR650
Wierd. You'd think between the fiberglass helmet, rubber tires, and relitive lowness, a motorcyclist woulnt be much of a target for lightning.

Was dude fleeing the scene of a robery at a church? Or had he just spit on a preist? Would explain alot!
Others have explained the cage thing. But also, you're not low, not at all. You're sticking up big time compared to the flat road surface.
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:46 PM   #12
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Rick was a real nice guy. He was the service manager at Adventure BMW. I only knew him casually but he was always freindly and very passionate about bikes. Eager to share his knowledge.

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Old 05-25-2005, 05:48 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freded
Living here in New Mexico we have a lot of lightning and I make a point of not riding into or near lightning. I had a neighbor on the bordering ranch that was struck by lightning and killed while herding a bunch of cattle. We had a small herd about 20 head of cattle struck by lightning killed them all. I've even seen lightning come thru the window and kill the television. I don't think that riding on rubber tires on a motorcycle will lessen the chance of a strike since you are probably the highest thing around. The rider probably ran into the lightning bolt.
A lightning strike killed 20 head of cattle? Holy shit! I've seen an IL tornado take out a few, but never that many at once.
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:50 PM   #14
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Lightning is serious shit. I avoid it like The Plague.
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Old 05-25-2005, 06:41 PM   #15
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My parents live in Vriginia Beach and called to tell me about this terrible thing, it is real to a family somewhere, so you guys keep yucking it up.

To the gang at Adventure BMW and his family, you have my deepest condolences.
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