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Re: RC: Horses and storms

In a message dated 6/28/01 5:15:35 PM Eastern Daylight Time, writes:

> Howard, you mentioned putting you horses up when it looks like it is
>  going to storm.  What to do with my horse has always been a dilemma.  We
>  have five acres, a big old dairy barn and also a stud pen and small
>  horse barn, plus another horse barn. ALL barns are metal.  

Man, I hadn't thought about that one.  You don't see too many metal 
structures here in Central Florida and I do believe the electrical storms are 
the reason why.  Anyway, my barn is all wood, as is my house.  Somebody has 
to feed those termites.

I would think (scary thought, I know) that even if the outer structure is 
metal, if the inside of your stalls are wood, with no metal that your horse 
can touch, it still might be the safest place. Plus, your horse is dry, not 
wet when inside.   But, please, don't take my guess for it, I'm sure one of 
the PHD's on ridecamp can tell you what your best shot is.

I just know lightning is a big killer of horses down here, especially this 
time of year.  I was working the other day, observing a storm, and since I 
work near the airport, I saw a bolt come out of a cloud and strike the runway 
less than a half mile away from the glass windowed room where I was standing. 
 The power from the flash made me jump back three feet, I tripped over the 
chair behind me and fell on the floor.  Bet you didn't know observing weather 
for a living could be so dangerous.

One of the men from the Airport's Fire Dept., who work in the same building, 
went out to see the damage.  They came back with chunks of asphalt from the 
runway that the bolt had tore out; the stuff had to weigh in at least twenty 
pounds.  Quite incredible considering that the average lightning bolt is no 
bigger in diameter than your thumb.  Another reason, for me, not to fly.

Inside seems safer than out.  I'm not sure about a metal structure, but I 
don't think I've ever heard of a horse getting hit by lightning that was 
inside a barn.


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