Possible lightning strike kills Australian man at Grand Canyon

Possible lightning strike kills Australian man at Grand Canyon

Investigators are working to determine the death of an Australian man who died on the South Kaibab Trail at the Grand Canyon on Sunday.

At this point, it is believed that 21-year-old Jonathan Crowden of Alfredton, Australia may have been struck by lightning.

The Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center first received a call late Sunday afternoon reporting that a man was possibly struck by lightning, according to a media release.

Paramedics located Crowden approximately 1 mile down the South Kaibab Trail. They were unable to resuscitate him.

An investigation is being conducted by the National Park Service in coordination with the Coconino County Medical Examiner.

Park rangers issued the following advice regarding lightning at Grand Canyon National Park:
  • Lightning can strike 10 miles across the canyon.
  • Park visitors and residents should stay away from exposed points during storms and lightning activity.
  • The safest place to be during a thunderstorm is inside a building or a vehicle with the windows closed.
  • Avoid touching metal railings when lightning activity is nearby.
  • Visitors to the park are reminded that if the sound of thunder follows a lightning flash within 30 seconds or less, they should seek shelter in a building or vehicle, or proceed to the nearest bus stop to get on a park shuttle.

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