Lightning strips bark off tree - - Columbia, South Carolina

Lightning strips bark off tree

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(Source: Jackie Anderson ) (Source: Jackie Anderson )

A Sumter County resident got quite the scare after lightning struck a tree at her home and stripped the tree of its bark Thursday night. 

Jackie Anderson said her son was standing in the kitchen and looking out the window and heard what he described as a noise that sounded like a bomb going off.

"I've never seen anything like it," Anderson said. 

Lightning seeks the path of least resistance to the ground and trees, because of their height, are natural lightning rods, experts say.

Damage can be minimal or quite literally explosive. Since water or sap is a better conductor than wood, lightning damage is often re­lated to the concentration of moisture in and around a tree.

The temperature of a lightning flash can be 30,000 degrees Celsius, five times hotter than the sun.

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