Garrett’s Blog: World’s Longest Lightning Bolt Started Near Arkansas

Image from NOAA NESDIS


The World Meteorological Organization certified a new world record for the longest lightning bolt.

The strike occurred on June 20th of 2007 and started just south of Tulsa and struck near the Texas/Oklahoma state line. The distance of the strike was 199.5 miles and it lasted 5.7 seconds.

The lightning bolt was detected with the Lightning Mapping Array which produces a 3D image of the bolt by detecting radiation in the VHF band.

Annually, the National Weather Service estimates 25 million strikes hit the United States with an average of 35 fatalities.