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Lightning strikes injure 3 during heavy storm in Hawaii

June 27, 2019

HONOLULU (AP) — Three people were injured by lightning strikes during heavy storms in Hawaii, a report said.

A 10-year-old boy and two men sustained serious injuries in two separate lightning strikes on Oahu Tuesday, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Wednesday.

As heavy rain continued Wednesday, a brown-water advisory warning the public to avoid dirty water that may be contaminated was in effect for Oahu along with a flash flood watch for Oahu, Niihau and Kauai.

Record rainfall of 4.2 inches (107 millimeters) was recorded in Honolulu on Tuesday, breaking the old record of 0.14 inches (3.56 millimeters) set in 1994.

The injured child and his father were traveling in a pickup truck around 9 a.m. Tuesday when lightning struck an electric transformer and sent sparks onto the boy’s right arm, said Honolulu Fire Department Capt. Scot Seguirant.

It is unclear whether the child was hit by lightning, although his injuries would likely be more significant if he suffered a direct strike, Seguirant said.

Around 8:45 p.m. Tuesday, two men aged 46 and 32 sustained arm injuries while touching an airplane struck by lightning at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport, fire officials said.

The men were contract employees working for vendors, said an American Airlines spokesman.

None of the injuries were reported as life-threatening.

Honolulu firefighters also responded to reports of three downed trees, four stalled vehicles and three water evacuations or flooding in various parts of Oahu during the thunderstorm.

“The public is advised to stay out of flood waters and storm water runoff due to possible overflowing cesspools, sewer, manholes, pesticides, animal fecal matter, dead animals, pathogens, chemicals, and associated flood debris,” said a state advisory.

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Information from: Honolulu Star-Advertiser, http://www.staradvertiser.com

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