Fires started by lightning peak in the summer months and in the late afternoon and early evening.

Facts & figures

  • During 2004-2008, departments responded to an estimated annual average of 24,600 fires started by lightning. These fires caused annual averages of 12 civilian deaths, 47 civilian injuries, and $407 million in direct property damage.
  • More than half of fires caused by lightning occur outdoors. Deaths and injuries from lightning fires is small, but the dollar loss is more than $400 million per year.
  • In 2004-2008, only 18% of reported lightning fires occurred in homes, but these accounted for 88% of the civilian deaths, 77% of the associated injuries and 70% of the property damage.

Source: NFPA's "Lightning Fires and Lightning Strikes" report by Ben Evarts, December 2010

Video: NFPA's Lisa Braxton says following some simple safety tips can greatly reduce the risk of being struck by lightning.

Updated: 7/13

NFPA (National Fire Protection Association)
1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169-7471 USA
Telephone: +1 617 770-3000 Fax: +1 617 770-0700