The wounds follow the line of his iPod, from his ears down his right side to his hip, where he was carrying the device. The iPod has a hole in the back, and the earbuds dissolved into green threads.Bunch and his mother believe the iPod acted as an antenna, drawing the lightning to him. There were tall pine trees nearby that didn't get hit. But lightning and weather experts say that's probably not the case.Link. Image: Denver Post / Helen H. Richardson (Thanks, Adam)
"There is no scientific evidence to show that lightning is 'attracted' to items like an iPod. However, if someone wearing earbuds is struck, current may travel along the wires into the ears," said Gregory Stewart of the Denver-based Lightning Reference Center. "There are documented cases of lightning traveling through wired telephones and killing the users. "
Update: Holy crap, the article says he was listening to Metallica when it happened... and dare we speculate,"Ride The Lightning?"
Reader comment: Mike says,
I guess its obvious that if anything attracted the lightning to him, it must be the tiny little iPod and not the huge hunk of metal called a lawnmower he was holding onto. Personally, I think it was the heavy metal in his music. On a more scientific note, I'm guessing the burn marks are due to the wires getting smoking hot conducting all that current that otherwise would have to travel through the "wetware".Bin Sun says,
By physics, the guy is lucky that the iPod bypassed the current. Otherwise he would have a hole in his head. The wire is metal and has higher conductivity and saved his head, God said.
Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: firstname.lastname@example.org.