NORTHPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Sunday night’s fierce storms brought lightning strikes to our area. One of them struck a man who was outside, he said, taking in the view.
On Monday he told CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff he considers himself lucky to be alive.
A neighbor checked in with 29-year-old Jon Borriello, who was still shaken up after a rare brush with Mother Nature. He said he was standing on his Ocean Avenue porch watching an intense, fast-moving thunderstorm, as he likes to do, when suddenly …
“A deafening boom. You couldn’t see anything. It was literally all white,” Borriello said.
Seconds after removing a flag pole from its mount, lightning struck the towering pine tree steps away and then Borriello on the shoulder.
“Out of nowhere, a lightning bolt, a very bright flash,” he said. “I didn’t realize it hit me until I was flying across the deck. I couldn’t see, couldn’t hear, couldn’t move. It felt like a freight train hit me in the chest.”
Borriello said the force of the electricity picked him up and threw him into the side of the house.
“I’m still in pain. My whole arm and shoulder are still numb,” he said.
Northport Police Chief William Ricca said the fire department found burn marks on the victim’s hands.
“They said that he had very minor injuries and was alert and conscious and first thing I said to the dispatcher was, ‘He should play Lotto tomorrow,'” Ricca said.
Which is exactly what Borriello did. He went out and bought several lottery tickets, and told Gusoff he has a new lease of life and respect for Mother Nature.
“Storms can be a cool thing, but you gotta realize that Mother Nature is powerful. The words of wisdom are do it from the safety of your home, inside a nice secure structure,” Ricca said.
Borriello said his lightning-watching days are over.
Roughly 500 people are struck by lightning each year.