A Viral Video Captured A Lightning Strike Directly Behind The Statue of Liberty

Kayla Blanton
Photo credit: Twitter/Mikey Cee
Photo credit: Twitter/Mikey Cee

From Women's Health

  • A Wednesday evening thunderstorm in New York City boasted bright lightning strikes.

  • Twitter user Mikey Cee caught a dramatic video of a giant purple flash striking directly behind the Statue of Liberty.

  • He said it was “the best video I ever captured.”

It’s electric! A Wednesday evening thunderstorm that loomed over New York City boasted particularly bright and flashy lightning strikes—one of which came astonishingly close to the Statue of Liberty. Twitter user Mikey Cee caught the eerie (but cool!) moment on video.

“The best video I ever captured,” he captioned the 20-second clip. In it, you can hear the intensity of the wind and see the ominously low storm clouds appear to kiss Lady Liberty’s torch. Almost immediately, a giant purple flash strikes directly behind the statue and lasts for a few seconds. Cee filmed the clip from a dock on Ellis Island.

The internet raved over the footage, many pointing out that of course, the strike didn’t actually touch Lady Liberty. It simply touched down behind the statue at the perfect angle that, from a distance, made it appear as though she could’ve been shocked.

“So, the lightning isn’t hitting the statue, the lag between the bolt and the thunder (about 10 sec) puts the actual strike about <2 miles away from the camera, nearer Ellis Island/Jersey,” one person tweeted in response to Cee’s video. “Great perspective though.”

Another added, “I’m confident the strike is nowhere near the statue (just looks like it) as the strike would have been attracted to the lightning conductor at the top of the edifice, not the base.” (Much like the One World Trade Center, pictured above during the storm on July 22.) According to the National Weather Service, the chances for a person—not a statue—to be struck by lightning are 1 in 15,300.

So, even though Lady Liberty missed the bolt this time, some are running with the striking imagery (pun intended) that the video provides. “If this isn’t a perfect metaphor for 2020, I don’t know what is,” one person wrote. “Ghostbusters is really happening!” another added. “Very symbolic,” another tweeted. “The Lady is not pleased and is ready to strike with more than just her torch.”

Other New Yorkers shared their less symbolic, but equally bright clips of the flashes. “Mine didn’t strike anything but it still looks cool,” @LaytheMadison on Twitter shared. Another clip, taken by @ariel_garel on Twitter, depicts the sky lighting up like a rave from a distance. “This is sadly all I got tonight with my phone because I didn’t have my camera and missed the storm,” she wrote.

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