COLUMBIA, S.C. — Storm season doesn’t seem to really end here in the South. From Summertime storms to severe weather in the Winter and Spring months lightning can be pretty common here in South Carolina.
According to a new report by Vaisala, we saw more than 198 million lightning strikes across the US with states like Texas, Florida, and Louisiana closing out the top 3 states that saw the most lightning.
South Carolina saw a total of 2,946,573 lightning strikes in 2022. When calculated, the state ranks 13th in the country for lightning density, a jump of 6 spots from the year before.
Looking at the lightning density in the state, places like Lexington and Richland counties ranged from 30 to 40 lightning strikes per square mile with Calhoun county having the highest lightning density in the Midlands. Other counties had even higher amounts though.
Dorchester country saw the highest density of lightning strikes last year in the state. A big factor for this is our summer months where we see the sea breeze forming. This boundary is great a supporting thunderstorm development. Which then moves inland right over what is essentially the I-95 corridor.
That’s why the city of St. Gorge ended up being the state’s capital for lightning last year with around 193 strikes per km squared.
We have already had some thunderstorms to start the year and it is looking more likely we could add to the lightning we have seen to that on Thursday as another round of storms move in.