Physics International

Superiority of Prostration as a Protection from Lightning Strike

Miah M. Adel

DOI : 10.3844/pisp.2012.9.21

Physics International

Volume 3, Issue 1

Pages 9-21


Problem statement: Because of the significant fatalities due to lightning strikes in open fields, exploration has been made to find the human body’s most comfortable posture having the lowest length, width and height and the least ground touch in any terrain indoor and outdoor for the safest shelter from lightning strikes that neutralize an enormous amount of positive and negative charges. Approach: Risks of direct lightning strike and of side flash and ground current due to a lightning hit at a nearby place have been discussed along with an estimation of interlimb current for standing, sitting, lying flat and prostrated positions using the fundamental laws of electricity in physics. Results: It is found that prostration in which the body is comfortably squeezed within a length of one meter with the forehead-nose tip, the palms, the knees and the toes grounded, making a maximum body height about 35 cm, offers the least chance of a lightning strike, side flash hit and interlimb current flows, concluding the best shelter against lighting hit. Conclusion/Recommendation: Prostration is superior to all other postures of sitting and lying to lower our body weight in order to avoid dangers of lightning. During lightning, outdoor people who are not in closed safe transportations, or not in otherwise better shelters are recommended to use this posture of the body as a safe protection from lightning strikes. Considering the fatalities caused by lightning, families and communities should hold lighting drills before the advent of the lightning season.


© 2012 Miah M. Adel. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.