We often hear about the incidents of lightning striking planes high above in the sky. However, no one hardly ever thought about the incident of lightning striking a submarine or boat. Why? Are people in submarines or boats not humans? Is this not a social injustice where you keep on talking about one issue while ignoring the other? Before you start to march for the rights of the people of the sea, allow me to calm you down and discuss the issue rationally.
You can better understand the issue using this example of a car. A person sitting inside a closed car is protected by the conducting metal frame of the car. It will conduct the electricity around the vehicle. The glass part of your car might be damaged by the changes occurring in the metal frame. However, if you’re near a car that is struck by lightning, chances are that you will highly suffer from this damage.
Let us use the same logic to the person on a boat that has no cover for protection. Unfortunately, the fate is same as the person who was standing near the car in the previous example. On the other hand, the closed cabin of a boat will insulate it while protecting the occupant of the boat.
The only remaining case study is the one where lightning strikes the submarine. The analogy remains for the cases where the submarine is either sunk or floating. The interesting fact about lightning and water is that most of the electrical discharge will not penetrate the surface of the water body. It tends to spread not vertically but horizontally. The chances of lightning hitting the land are more than hitting water. Swimming deeper is a good idea to deal with this situation. People of submarine are safer than those on the land.
Entirely Randall Monroe said,
“A boat without a cabin is as safe as a golf course. A boat with a closed cabin and a lightning protection system is as safe as a car. A submarine is about as safe as a submarine safe (a submarine safe is not to be confused with a safe in a submarine, a safe in a submarine is substantially safer than a submarine safe).”
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