A 38-year-old man who was walking on an unguarded beach in the park’s Sandy Hook Unit with his brother and two cousins during a severe thunderstorm on Sunday afternoon was struck by lightning and killed.
The unit’s guarded beaches were in the process of being evacuated at the time. The victim’s brother said that he saw the lightning and that he found his brother on the ground when he looked back.
There appeared to be an entry wound on the the man's left hip and an exit wound in his left carotid (neck) area with major trauma. The man's cousins were both admitted to the hospital for cardiac monitoring and CAT scans, but without specific complaints.
Subsequent to the incident, ten other visitors stepped forward, complaining of ringing in the ears and headaches related to the strike. The investigation is on-going.
According to news reports, the line of severe, fast-moving storms that crossed the region produced as many as 32,000 lightning strikes in New Jersey alone.
There were numerous other lightning injuries from these storms throughout the area, including five soccer players on Long Island and a lifeguard and beach-goer in Cape May, New Jersey.