Bangladesh lightning strike kills 17 on wedding boat

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Bangladesh lightning strike kills 17 on wedding boat

At least 17 people were killed and more than a dozen injured after lightning struck a wedding party in Bangladesh on Wednesday.

“We have information of 17 people who died,” said police official Farid Hossain of the tragedy, which occurred in the Padma river in Shibganj town, CNN reported.

The bolt reportedly hit while a wedding barge was ferrying guests across the river to the bride’s house.

Subsequent reports state that 14 people, including the groom, were injured in the freak incident and had to be transported to the hospital.

Unfortunately, Bangladesh is no stranger to deadly electrical storms, which often occur during the warm months from March to July. In 2016, the tropical nation declared lightning strikes a natural disaster after more than 200 people perished in one month, including 82 in a single day, the Mirror reported.

Police and relatives transport the body of a victim who died in the lightning strike.
Police and relatives transport the body of a victim who died in the lightning strike.
AFP via Getty Images

Experts attribute the spike in strikes to the country’s rampant deforestation problem, which eliminates trees that might’ve otherwise attracted the bolts like lightning rods.

Bangladesh isn’t the only part of the subcontinent prone to lightning strikes: Last month in Jaipur, India, 18 people were killed when a bolt blasted a watchtower where tourists were snapping storm selfies.

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