BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Two kids and an adult are recovering after lightning struck at Patterson Park in South Baltimore over the weekend.
Witnesses say the powerful storm left many with only moments to take shelter.
Those who were in the park say a man and his two kids were huddled under a tree, waiting for the storm to pass when the tree was hit by a powerful bolt of lightning.
As afternoon storms rolled in, and skies darkened, a bolt of lightning rocked the area between the tennis courts and swimming pool.
The strike seriously injured two children and an adult man, sending them to the hospital.
According to the family’s pastor and fire officials, a 7-year-old girl, 4-year-old boy and their 39-year-old father were on their way to the pool Saturday afternoon.
“Eddie described it as being a very bright white light, just like a huge shock and knocked all three of them to the ground,” said Pastor Paul Warren of Abbott Memorial Presbyterian Church.
“Two neighbors here on East Pratt street ran out into the rain, then I realized that they were aiding somebody under the tree,” one witness said.
A softball player, nearby at the time, says the strike felt like a small earthquake.
“We saw it get a little closer, the rain started picking up, and then once we figured out the game was canceled, started leaving the field,” witness Eric Mendelson said. “As I was leaving we just hear a really loud clap and figured lightning struck close by, didn’t realize it hit exactly at the field.”
Because this is a medical situation, the Baltimore City Fire Department has not released the victims’ names.
“I have a 9-year-old boy myself and the idea that we are so vulnerable,” resident Richard Schroeder said.
The National Weather Service says lightning strikes the U.S. 25 million times a year and kills an average of 7 people annually and injures hundreds more.
The Patterson Park victims were released from the hospital after being listed in serious condition.