Watch Lightning Hit 3 Chicago Skyscrapers at the Same Time
It's been said that lightning never strikes twice. I can prove with science that's not even close to true as I've found a video showing lightning hitting 3 Chicago skyscrapers at the same time and that happened FOUR times.
Dan Robinson obviously has some crazy video skills. During the storms that produced the 2020 derecho event across Iowa and parts of Illinois, he captured lighting teeing off on the high rise buildings in Chicago.
He did this with 1500 frames per second video magic. Here's how Dan described it:
Lightning from the August 10, 2020 "derecho" severe thunderstorms repeatedly strikes Chicago skyscrapers, including the Sears Tower and John Hancock Center, filmed with a high speed camera at 1,500 frames per second. The city’s three tallest buildings were hit simultaneously FOUR times with upward (ground-to-cloud) lightning.
As you can see in the video, it's ground-to-lightning phenomena. As the National Severe Storms Laboratory explains, this is really an illusion as negative particles are cast to the ground, but are invisible to the human eye until it appears to spark upward.
My wife is a meteorologist and found this tidbit from the NSSL that gives the scientific explanation:
Typically, when lightning strikes something on the ground, the object that is struck sends a faint channel upward that joins the downward developing flash and creates the connection to the ground. Taller objects are more likely than shorter objects to produce the upward channel.
After I recovered from my blank stare, I said "thanks, that's how I thought it worked" even though I had no idea. What I do know is Dan's video is a crazy cool once-in-a-lifetime video capture.