Sixteen-year-old angler Tucker Owings was thankful to be uninjured following a close call with lightning on a recent fishing trip, which was captured on video.
“We were literally feeling what I would describe as static on our rods,” Owings told KLTV about his encounter with dangerous . “At that point we quickly started to head to the ramp.”
The teen and a companion were fishing out of Lake Athens in Texas on Saturday when a barrage of lightning struck just in front of their boat, the video of which can be seen below.
Owings knew that it could have gone badly. A study released earlier this year by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) stated that out of all outdoorsmen, anglers and commercial fishermen are most likely to be struck by lightning. In fact, between the years of 2006 and 2012 over 11 percent of deaths caused by direct lightning strikes were fishermen. NOAA cautions anglers to know when to seek cover and to practice safe fishing while out in rough weather. Storms can come in suddenly, so being able to recognize the first steps of bad weather is always crucial, as well as checking the forecast beforehand.
Owings decided that a lightning strike just feet off the bow of his bass boat was more than enough reason to head back to shore.
“I am thankful God protected us,” he told KLTV, adding that he had just learned a very important lesson.
At the age of 16, Owings had already made a name for himself as a professional bass angler. The teen recently spent time in Honduras fishing and building a home for a needy family. When he is not chasing after bass, Owings likes to fly fish with his dad or go hunting with his family.
A helpful video with tips from NOAA about avoiding bad weather on the water can be seen here.