September 6, 2013 in Region

Motorcyclist only slightly injured after lightning hit on Interstate 5

Manuel Valdes Associated Press
 

SEATTLE – The Washington State Patrol said a motorcyclist survived a lightning strike as he rode on Interstate 5 in Chehalis, Wash. The close call was part of a day of intermittently dramatic weather for Washington.

Witness Martin Zapalac told KOMO-TV that the motorcyclist had just passed him when the man and his bike “lit up” Thursday morning. The biker managed to pull over on the highway shoulder, and the witness drove with him to a nearby gas station. The 59-year-old Tenino, Wash., motorcyclist doesn’t remember what happened, KOMO reported. The man was treated locally for burns to his ears, then taken to a Seattle hospital, where he was in satisfactory condition.

Rain and lightning hit areas of Western Washington early Thursday, and more storm pockets produced rain and more lightning Thursday afternoon and evening.

Flood watches were issued for many areas throughout the state.

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