exceptional lightning strikes hit the Haut-Rhin

exceptional lightning strikes hit the Haut-Rhin
exceptional lightning strikes hit the Haut-Rhin

The Kaysersberg sector, in Haut-Rhin, experienced a significant stormy episode on the night of May 1. A lightning strike of 222,000 amperes was notably recorded, a fairly rare intensity.

Residents of the Colmar sector experienced a restless start to the night on May 1. Lightning struck several times between 9 and 10 p.m. in this area of ​​Haut-Rhin. The most significant impacts affected the Kaysersberg sector, a town located 15 kilometers from the town of Bartholdi.


222,000 amperes is the intensity recorded for this lightning strike near Kaysersberg. A “wild house shaker”, an exceptional classification meaning that the storm can shake houses.

© Screenshot / Meteologix

According to the monitoring site Météologix, which records the intensity of all lightning strikes over a given period and area, one of them reached 222,000 amperes. This is a fairly exceptional intensity, to the extent that 99% of lightning strikes are below 200,000. This specialized site also classifies it as a “Wild House Shaker”, a very rare category designating phenomena capable of making houses “shake”.

According to Adrien Thomas, meteorology enthusiast and administrator of the Storm Monitoring account in Alsace, there were a total of three impacts greater than 100,000 amps, a threshold “rarely exceeded“.”It can be impressive for residents, because it feels like a big explosion, or a bomb falling nearby. This type of storm is indeed very rare, but last year, there was one at 318,000 amps in Mundolsheim. It had been felt by a large part of Bas-Rhin.

On social networks, amateur photographers competed in talent to capture the phenomenon. Benoît Gassman even thinks he precisely captured the impact at 222,000 amps, since it was the last one of the episode. “It is generally the last impacts which are the strongest, explains Adrien Thomas, who took the photo of Benoît Gassmann on his page. And the intensity is such that they “burn” the photo, that is to say that the settings are not adapted to the exposure, much higher than that of classic lightning strikes.

Several residents of the area also commented on the published photographs, saying that the thunder made “shake the windows.” “The most impressive thunderclap I’ve heard in my entire life, the ground shook for real“, it is still written.

Thunderstorms are expected to continue this Thursday, May 2, particularly in Bas-Rhin from the afternoon. The two Alsatian departments are on yellow thunderstorm alert.



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