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The Electrifying Weather Lightning is known as natures fireworks It is a sudden electric discharge Also recognized as a spark of electricity between a cloud and the ground Thunderstorms are where lightning and thunder occur They are formed when a cold front moves in and meets a warm front Also cumulonimbus clouds produce thunderstorms Cumulonimbus clouds are formed when there is enough upward motion and enough moisture in the air to produce a deep cloud that can reach colder than freezing Mostly these conditions are met in the summer Lightning occurs around 15000- 25000ft above sea level It originates when the raindrops convert into ice and are carried upwards The lightning charges move downward in 50yard sections called step-leaders It takes place in less than a second When lightning strikes it heats up the air and this causes the air to expand This sudden expansion of the air results in sound waves which we hear as thunder The temperature can reach up to 18000 degrees F Most of the lightning in the United States happens in Tampa Bay Florida This is because of the moisture content in the atmosphere is close to the surface and the surface temperature is high Along with Tampa Bay there is a high activity of lightning in the Gulf of Mexico and Texas The longest lightning bolt was 118 miles long which occurred in Texas Usually long bolts originate in front of squall lines The average bolt is around 60 miles long or more Lightning bolts that dont strike the surface are called Cloud Flashes Safety is a very important factor because lightning is very dangerous Lightning can kill or cause fatal injury in people The lightning current can branch off to a person from a tree fence pole or other tall objects People can also be injured indirectly by the lightning current traveling through power lines telephone lines and plumbing pipes And the person using a telephone or
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