Lightning strikes have killed 22 people and injured 17 others in the first five months of this year, in 46 recorded incidents, according to a new National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) report.
The report noted that lightning strikes also killed 53 head of cattle and damaged 11 homes in the period from January-May.
NCDM spokesman Soth Kim Kolmony said Battambang province experienced the most significant lightning incidents during the period, at eight, with three fatalities. Although neighbouring Pursat witnessed just three such incidents, the province logged the most fatalities, at four, he said.
NCDM said that the impact caused by weather-related incidents dropped by half compared to January-May last year, and that the committee’s first vice-president Kun Kim had embarked on a campaign to spread public awareness on preventive measures.
It said weather conditions were generally better in the first five months of this year compared to the corresponding period of 2021, with a decline in the number of significant strong wind and lightning incidents.
In January-May, 79 strong wind incidents tore the roofs off of 1,777 homes, and either levelled or caused major damage to 527 others, killing two people and injuring 16 more.
The report included an appeal from Kim to the general public and local authorities to take the proper precautions against natural disasters, especially during the rainy season.