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Lightning strikes 2 workers in Pompano Beach

Men injured while working on roof of Joey Accardi Jeep

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. – Two men were struck by lightning Thursday while working on the roof of a Pompano Beach car dealership, Pompano Beach Fire Rescue said.

Robert Elliott, 55, and Angel Lopes, 47, were working on the roof of Joey Accardi Jeep, 909 S. Federal Highway, when they were struck by lightning and collapsed, Broward Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Keyla Concepcion said.

"One was conscious and one is in critical condition," Pompano Beach spokeswoman Sandra King said.

Lopes suffered minor injuries and was taken to Broward Health North.

Elliott was taken to Broward Health North and later transferred to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami. He was listed in critical condition.

Concepcion said the men work for Latite Roofing.

Michael Anthony, 30, of Lighthouse Point, said he was at the car dealership driving around to meet with a sales representative.

He said it was drizzling when suddenly "there was the most tremendous crash I had ever heard."

Anthony said he felt the ground shake.

"I thought a truck had collided with me," Anthony said. "My heart was just beating right up there in my throat."

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, lightning has killed four people this year in the United States.

Two of the four victims died in Florida. Larry Webb, 71, was fishing at a Plant City lake. Augustin Navarrete-Guerrero, 40, was walking to his car at a construction site in Tampa.


  • No place outside is safe when thunderstorms are in the area
  • If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.
  • When you hear thunder move to safe shelter such as a building with electricity or plumbing or an enclosed, metal-topped vehicle with windows up.
  • Stay in safe shelter at least 30 minutes after you hear the last sound of thunder.
  • Stay off corded phones, computers and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity.
  • Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths and faucets.
  • Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.
  • Do not lie on concrete floors, and do not lean against concrete walls.
  • Immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, mountain ridges or peaks
  • Never lie flat on the ground
  • Never shelter under an isolated tree
  • Never use a cliff or rocky overhang for shelter
  • Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes and other bodies of water
  • Stay away from objects that conduct electricity such as barbed wire fences, power lines or windmills.

Source: National Weather Service

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Check your local weather radar