News & Events

DATE : 8 December 2019
WRITER : Tengku Faezah Tengku Yusof
PUBLISHER : Bernama.com

KUALA LUMPUR – The rainy season is upon us and with that comes thunderstorms and the risk posed by lightning strikes.

Speaking of lightning, did you know it is more dangerous to talk on a corded landline phone than a cellular phone during a thunderstorm?

Landlines are more dangerous simply because the cable connection to the phone conducts electricity, which increases the possibility of the user being struck by lightning, said Malaysian Meteorological Department director-general Jailan Simon.

“However, mobile phones are also vulnerable to lightning strikes if a person uses it while the phone is plugged into a charger during a thunderstorm,” he told Bernama in an interview recently.

About 16 million thunderstorms occur yearly worldwide, said Jailan. In Malaysia, a total of 132 deaths due to lightning strikes were recorded over the last 10 years from 2008 up to August 2019.

The west coast of Peninsular Malaysia recorded the highest number of deaths (89) during that period, followed by the east coast (22) and Sabah and Sarawak (21).