Two killed by Arakan lightning strike

Six people were knocked unconscious after a lightning bolt hit a farm hut in Arakan state earlier this month, two of whom died from their injuries.

The freak accident occurred in Watkamauk village outside Mrauk-U township on 19 October. The local hospital confirmed the two fatalities.

The six had reportedly been sitting inside the hut when a heavy storm hit the region.

“The lightning struck at 4.45pm and there were six people in the hut at the time. All of them were knocked out and four of them regained consciousness around 6pm or 7pm but they found the other two dead, as well as a buffalo and a cow,” said a local monk.

Bodies of the deceased were sent to Mrauk-U hospital that evening and doctors confirmed the cause of death as being struck by lightning. They were buried at Minthakyun cemetery in Mrauk-U.

On the same day a landslide in nearby Khitechaung village swept away a number of houses. “So far three bodies have been buried – apparently at least 50 people were killed. Now locals in the village are searching for more bodies,” said the monk.

Despite the deaths there, Arakan state was comparatively unscathed by the storm, which arrived from Bangladesh and last week caused havoc in Magwe division. Heavy flooding resulted in the deaths of more than 200 people, and caused widespread damage in several towns.

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