Lightning Safety Week is special for this man - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lightning Safety Week is special for this man

Posted: Updated:
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Missing man with Alzheimer's Disease Found

    Missing man with Alzheimer's Disease Found

    Thursday, July 31 2014 4:34 AM EDT2014-07-31 08:34:46 GMT
    Authorities in Berrien County are searching for a man with Alzheimer's Disease that has gone missing.They say John Bethea was last seen heading south on White Pond Road in Nashville at 11 a.m.More >>
    Authorities in Berrien County are searching for a man with Alzheimer's Disease that has gone missing.They say John Bethea was last seen heading south on White Pond Road in Nashville at 11 a.m.More >>
  • Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:42 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:42:06 GMT
    Dr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant CoachDr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant Coach
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
  • Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:34 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:34:18 GMT
    William D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District CommanderWilliam D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District Commander
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
CORDELE, GA (WALB) -

Summer weather brings storms and lightning that can create serious damage. The Georgia Emergency Management Agency is using this week as a lightning safety week.

They want people to realize that storms are close enough to cause damage if you can see and hear them. Not many people know that quite like Harold Payne.

Payne has repaired roofs for 35 years. Last May, he thought he was beating a storm, but a lightning strike got him first. 

"Everything was just black, and when I came to, I was thinking, I got to get down this ladder, if I don't I'm going to fall," said Harold Payne.

The lightning strike hit off a tree and ran down the roof Payne was working on. It fried his finger tips, burnt his elbow, and blew a hole in his leg.

"They were hollering, lightning struck you, lightning struck you, get down, get down, and I couldn't. I was just froze to the ladder."

Payne eventually got down and was taken to the hospital. The Georgia Emergency Management Agency is using Lightning Safety Week to teach people how to avoid this.

The agency says you should: find shelter in a sturdy building, stay away from showers, unplug appliances, and go to a low-lying place if you are caught outside.

You should also avoid going outside for thirty minutes every time lightning is seen or thunder is heard.

Payne has one message to people.

"There's nothing that important that you've got to stay out in it. No matter what the circumstances, a job's not worth it, a golf game's not worth it, nothing. If you can hear it or see it, get out of it."

Payne is one of the lucky victims who can tell the story about being struck by lightning, and he realizes that quite often.

"Just to be here and talk about it is a blessing. How many people do you know that got struck by lightning and is here to talk about it?

Payne says he is glad the good Lord was with him on that stormy day.

Copyright 2014 WALB.  All rights reserved.