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Thunder and lightning

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Thunder and lightning

Old 08-24-12, 09:51 AM
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jrickards
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Thunder and lightning

It was a warm 20C with lots of humidity in the air (and rain after I got to work) on my commute this morning. The most eventful thing that happened was that I was stung on the lip by a wasp. I've been stung before so I wasn't too concerned, I kept "watch" of my lip and jaw to see if it would swell or I got significant numbness but neither so I was fine (even now, 5.5hrs later, the puncture area is still sore).

This got me thinking about what others have encountered that are much more serious that just a wasp sting, such as a lighning strike: has anyone been struck?

How do others deal with forecasts for, threats of or actual thunder and lightning storms?
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Old 08-24-12, 10:01 AM
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i do not enjoy riding through electrical storms. i cognitively know the chances are much, MUCH greater that i will be run over by a motorist than be struck by lightning, but lightning still scares me more on a deeper, more primeval level.

the times that i have been caught in electrical storms, i've taken cover under viaducts, bridges, building overhangs, and such.
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Old 08-24-12, 10:10 AM
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Lightning is one of the two things I'll skip a bike commute for. Most of the time. Unless I think I can squeeze through that whole the weather radar is showing and make it before the next storm hits.

(Ice on the roads is the other, FWIW.)

Two of the nastiest rides I've had involved hail. On one, I took shelter under a convenience store roof in a not-the-best neighborhood. The neighbors made me uncomfortable, but not as uncomfortable as the pea-sized hail coming through my helmet vents. The other was on tour, in the middle of Nowhere, WY, with no shelter anywhere, and of course there was a thunderstorm and hail that was mostly too big for helmet vents, but when it hit jacketed shoulders, it hurt. Fortunately, the lightning missed us that time!
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Old 08-24-12, 12:55 PM
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About half of my ride is under high voltage power lines. Rain and lightning make me nervous there when I'm under them, and I'll usually not ride on those days.
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Old 08-24-12, 01:15 PM
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Usually the thunderstorms around here are short lived events and almost never happen during my morning commute. In the afternoon, if my schedule allows, I'll wait it out at work.

If I have to be someplace at a certain time, I'll try to time my departure to avoid the worst. I don't have a strong fear of lightning and it's unusual for cyclists to get hit by it, but it does happen.
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Old 08-24-12, 05:33 PM
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It hasn't rained here for so long that I don't remember what I used to do in thunder and lightning.
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Old 08-24-12, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by no motor? View Post
About half of my ride is under high voltage power lines. Rain and lightning make me nervous there when I'm under them, and I'll usually not ride on those days.
do you ever worry about the strong emf generated by the high voltage lines?
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Old 08-24-12, 09:49 PM
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I actually love thunder and lightening and rain like that, though I wouldn't want to be on a aluminum boat in the middle of a lake while that was happening, but a bike is ok. Most of the time I avoid riding if it's raining, but sometimes I get stuck in one while riding and it's actually fun as long as the temps don't drop a lot leaving me chilled. I will find cover if one's available, about two weeks ago I rode into a barn and waited it out, but the wind was what worried me the most not the rain and lightening. 40 to 50 mph side gusts while riding a busy highway can be a bit troublesome then add lack of visibility for drivers into the mix and you have a recipe for road kill.
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Old 08-24-12, 11:58 PM
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Thunder and lightening do not scare me. I much more concerned with high wind gusts that blow large branches off from trees or blow some other large debris all over the place.
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Old 08-25-12, 03:08 AM
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Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
The most eventful thing that happened was that I was stung on the lip by a wasp.

...

How do others deal with forecasts for, threats of or actual thunder and lightning storms?
Huh, I needed a segway to tell a little story. Last weekend I was camping and as this is Ireland and as it was sunny we found a beer garden to cool off and let the kids play. We had all finished our fish and chips when i popped to the loo. My pocket had a whole in it and a bunch of change fell out of my pocket. Scooped it up and returned it to my pocket when I felt a hot pin slice in to my finger. Came out like wtf did I have a thorn or nail in there? I slowly pulled out the lining of my pocket with the kids circled around me and the bugger came out of my pocket and flew away much to the kid's amazement.

Have to say wasps are much worse than honey bees. I actually felt it up to my elbow and my finger hurt like hell and got stiff. Put the kibosh on my holiday mood for an hour until I put some ice on it.


So to the question, while I religiously check the forecast the Irish weather is so changeable it's hard to take it seriously. 90% of the time they predict lightening I don't recall seeing it or hearing thunder. Really the only thing that stops me is high gusty winds. I often find an excuse to run an errand in the car those days.

Last edited by newkie; 08-25-12 at 03:11 AM.
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Old 08-25-12, 06:40 AM
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If possible, I'll wait out a thunderstorm. But if not, I just charge out.

There was one rainstorm that did stop me. It was raining very hard and it was very windy. The raindrops felt like BBs hitting my face,and I hid out at a gas station until it passed. There were two motorcyclists who also took shelter there. My lips were still hurting a couple of days later.
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Old 08-25-12, 01:41 PM
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Thunder & Lightening

I have to agree with the others here. Thunder and lightening or a forecast for such will keep me from riding. This is Florida and we are not only a flat open state, but also pretty much the lightening capital. So I'll avoid riding in both.
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Old 08-25-12, 03:31 PM
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I have to get to work, and if that means riding during a thunderstorm or snowstorm I'm fine with it.
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Old 08-26-12, 07:13 PM
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you've got to knock knock knock on wood.
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Old 08-27-12, 02:42 PM
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rode home from work one summer afternoon. it was a hot sunny day. then came the thunderstorms. the torential rain was OK what was not OK was this.

on a lonely country road with some trees along the road, I hear rolling thunder overhead moving perpendicular to my direction of travel, and it sounds so ominous and low right over my head but passing from my left, to over my head, and then moves to my right. rolling the whole time - it seems like a lifetime but maybe was only 20 seconds. during that whole time as I heard it rolling approaching, passing overhead and rolling to my right I was convinced I would die that day. I guess I should have bailed off the bike, huh?
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Old 08-27-12, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
do you ever worry about the strong emf generated by the high voltage lines?
Do I worry about them when it's wet? Not really, as I figure the supports are pretty well grounded.
Do I worry about them in general? Some, but I figure the trade off in safety in being off the street is worth the potential risk of harm from the emf.
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Old 08-27-12, 05:00 PM
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I don't ride in lightening that appears to be within 5-10 miles. Rain or snow or sleet don't bother me, but I don't have any desire to glow in the dark.....
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