ARVADA, Colo. (CBS4)– The man who recorded a lightning strike during a severe thunderstorm earlier this week was knocked to the ground when the lightning bolt struck too close to his home.

Chad Greenlees still has ringing in his ears from Monday night’s storm.

“I’m still really sore. I still can’t hear out of this ear very well,” said Greenlees.

Before he was knocked off his feet, Greenlees wanted to take a closer look at the storms so he went outside and started recording the lightning strikes on his cellphone. He thought he was taking safety in his garage.

Chad Greenlees (credit: CBS)

Chad Greenlees (credit: CBS)

“I panned over this way and came back over this way… and BAM!” said Greenlees.

His 13-year-old daughter heard the crash and found him seconds later.

“There was my dad, convulsing on the floor,” said Ileah Greenlees.

Eve Klein took this photo on July 7 near North Table Mountain in Golden.

Eve Klein took this photo on July 7 near North Table Mountain in Golden.

She called 911 who instructed her not to touch her father in case he still carried a charge.

Editor’s Note: Contrary to the 911 operator’s advice, it’s a myth that people carry charges after being struck by lightning. Source: National Weather Service

“He was laying flat on his back and he was shaking really bad,” said Ileah.

“I woke up in my hallway with paramedics all around me,” said Greenlees.

Doctors released him a few hours later. He only suffered bruises and a bump on his head.

“It was like being dipped in 9-volt battery water,” said Greenlees. “It’s something I don’t want to go through again.”


He believes the reason he’s still standing is that the main bolt didn’t hit him.

Greenlees said if he’s tempted to watch a summer storm, it will be from a safe location.

“Lesson learned, don’t play with Mother Nature.”

The National Lightning Safety Institute states the safest place to be during a lightning storm is inside a building or vehicle.

The video Greenlees captured was uploaded to YouTube and received nearly 30,000 hits in just 36 hours.


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