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Is it Safe to Use Mobile Phone During a Lightning Storm? Know This Important Information!

Is it safe to use mobile phone while lightning and thunderstorm or during rain?

Lightning storms are spectacular and frightening, and there are many myths about what is safe and what isn’t during such an event. One common concern is whether it is safe to use a cell phone during a lightning storm. Could making a call really increase your risk of getting struck?

Do you think using a cell phone during a lightning storm is unsafe?

Understanding Lightning Safety

Lightning is a powerful natural phenomenon that occurs during thunderstorms, characterized by a sudden electrostatic discharge between clouds or between a cloud and the ground. The rapid expansion and heating of air caused by lightning produces the thunder we hear. Each year, it’s estimated that there are over 1.4 billion flashes of lightning worldwide, some of which can unfortunately result in injury or damage if proper precautions are not taken.

The Myth About Cell Phones and Lightning

Safety Concerns:

  • Many people believe that using a cell phone during a lightning storm can attract lightning, similar to metal objects which are often thought to draw lightning strikes. However, scientific evidence suggests that cell phones, being small devices without substantial metal components like those found in larger objects (e.g., metal poles), do not themselves attract lightning.

How Strikes Happen:

  • Lightning strikes to individuals usually occur because they are in an exposed location during a storm, such as under a tree or out in a field, not because they are using a cell phone. The key danger from using electronic devices during a storm comes from their connection to larger metallic structures, like charging a phone plugged into an electrical outlet, which could conduct a strike from outside.

Modern Safety Tips:

  • It’s safest to avoid all wired electronic devices during a lightning storm, including landline phones and appliances. Wireless devices like cell phones, when not plugged in, pose no additional lightning strike risk by their nature. The best practice is to stay indoors, away from windows, doors, and anything that could conduct electricity from a strike.


The notion that cell phones attract lightning is largely a myth. However, it’s crucial to stay cautious and use common sense during thunderstorms by staying indoors and avoiding unnecessary risks. Using a cell phone that’s not connected to a charger during a storm does not increase your risk of being struck by lightning, but overall awareness and safety practices during storms are essential.

Now it’s your turn to weigh in: Given the facts, do you believe that using a cell phone during a lightning storm is a risk? Vote in our poll and share your thoughts on lightning safety.

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