16 killed by Lightning during wedding in Bangladesh

At least 16 people have died after several lightning bolts hit a Bangladesh wedding party on Wednesday, August 4.

The government administrator for the town confirmed the news of the tragedy in a statement.

The group had just left a boat at the riverside town of Shibganj to take shelter from the thunderstorm when the lightning struck, AFP reported. Prior to the tragedy, it is reported that several bolts struck within a few seconds of each other in the western district of Chapainawabganj.

Other reports indicated that the bride was not with the wedding party when the incident happened but the groom is among those injured following the incident.

Fierce monsoon storms have battered Bangladesh. A week of torrential rains in the southeastern district of Cox’s Bazar left some 20 dead, including six Rohingya refugees.

Lightning kills hundreds of people in the South Asian nation each year. In 2016, nearly 200 death were recorded in lightning incidents, with 82 people dying on a single day in May.

It is reported that many deaths are never officially recorded, however, and one independent monitor counted at least 349 deaths from lightning strikes.

Some experts say deforestation has increased the death toll with Bangladesh planting hundreds of thousands of palm trees in a bid to ease the impact of climate change and reduce the number of lightning deaths.

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