What causes lightning strikes?

6 Storm Team Weather School

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Have you ever wondered why lightning occurs? The 6 On Your Side Strom Team has the answer.

First, warm air rises and produces big storm clouds. As the air rises, ice particles and water droplets in the cloud begin to collide and create both positive and negative charges inside of the cloud. Due to the course of collisions and the top of the clouds will be positive, the bottom will be negative, and the ground is positive.

As a result, the energy from the opposite charges will meet the other. The negative charge meets the leader from a positive charge and creates the flash or lightning. Positive strikes can occur from the top of the storm, also called the anvil, and those are usually the deadliest strikes of lightning.

Lightning can strike miles away from the parent thunderstorm, so even if you’re not within the storm or within distance to it and can hear thunder, you should try and stay indoors to avoid any lightning outside.

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