Mother-of-two killed after being struck by lightning on beach

A Venezuelan mother-of-two visited a beach in Colombia where she was struck down by lightning

Amelia Neath
Thursday 16 November 2023 20:15 GMT
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<p>Mother-of-two Froilanis Rivas, 34, was killed by lightning on Tuesday </p>

Mother-of-two Froilanis Rivas, 34, was killed by lightning on Tuesday

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A Venezuelan woman was struck and killed by lightning while visiting a Colombian beach on vacation with her family.

Froilanis Rivas, 34, was fatally struck by a bolt as she visited Boquilla Beach in the province of Cartagena and stood by the water, according to authorities in the country.

There are approximately 24,000 fatalities worldwide linked to lightning annually, with ten times that amount in injuries, according to the National Library of Medicine.

In video footage obtained by Notitarde, a national Venezuelan newspaper, a woman believed to be Rivas can be seen standing at the water’s edge.

Then, within a second, a lightning strike hit exactly where she was standing before she collapsed, her body seeming lifeless as she dropped backwards.

Emergency responders spent 45 minutes trying to revive the struck woman

A person who was metres away from the strike fell to the ground, too, before jumping up and rushing towards the woman.

Paramedics responded to the scene and rushed the victim to Serena del Mar Hospital, where they spent 45 minutes trying to resuscitate Rivas, who had gone into cardiac arrest, local reports stated.

She was later pronounced dead at the hospital.

A spokesperson for Cartagena’s Mayor’s Office reportedly said to outlets that “they tried to revive her for 45 minutes. After that, they declared her deceased."

Local authorities have reportedly asked all beach-goers to clear the area after the Cartagena Risk Management Office issued a severe weather alert earlier that day, according to The Sun.

In a Facebook post Rivas’s family say they are still trying to transport her remains back to Venezuela for burial.

This incident comes after another lighting strike caught on camera in September when a 33-year-old woman and a hammock seller were both struck while on a beach in Mexico.

Elvia de Jesus was pronounced dead on the beach, while the seller, Felix Andres, later died of his injuries in hospital.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 40 million lightning strikes hit the ground in the US each year, but there is less than one in a million chance that someone would be hit.

People who are struck by lightning have a 90 per cent survival rate.

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