Lightning from a pop-up storm claimed the life of one man at Burlington Country Club in Westhampton, N.J., marking the first death by a lightning strike in the U.S. this year. A stray bullet struck another man in the head while he was dining on the patio at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C. Police believe the shooting was accidental, possibly from a gun fired into the air from some distance away.
Country clubs are generally a place to unwind and relax, but for two men on the grounds of clubs in New Jersey and North Carolina, the week was anything but peaceful.
A man playing golf in Westhampton, N.J. was killed when a pop-up storm turned deadly, a CBS affiliate out of Philadelphia reported. Officials said the victim was on the golf course at Burlington Country Club when he got caught in the storm.
The incident occurred about 500 yards away from the course’s clubhouse, CBS Philly reported. Heavy heat during the afternoon meant that the course at the club was not as busy as it might have been.
One golfer said the sky was gray but did not appear immediately threatening, CBS Philly reported. By 3:30 p.m., things seemed to change in an instant. Radar showed lightning swiftly entering the Westampton/Mt. Holly area.
According to Westampton police, a golfer who was rushing to seek shelter from the pop-up storm was fatally injured when lightning struck a tree that was close to him, CBS Philly reported. The man described to be in his 70s died at the scene near the seventh hole. The man had not yet been officially identified.
It was unclear exactly how he was injured, but the ground was wet from recent heavy rainfall, making it easy for currents to travel, CBS Philly reported.
The death came a day after The Washington Post posted an article noting that the United States had yet to see a lightning fatality in 2021, setting a record for the longest stretch into a year without one occurring.
A man dining on the patio at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C. was struck in the head by a stray bullet the evening of June 8, WXII reported.
Sheriff Danny H. Rogers from the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office said a 57-year-old man was shot just before 7 p.m.
Beverly Marler, General Manager of Sedgefield CC, told WXII that the incident was unfortunate and appeared at that point in the investigation to be random.
Marler said she was grateful to the first responders who treated the member, WXII reported. Firearms are not allowed on the property, she added.
Authorities said the wound was superficial and the victim declined to be treated by emergency medical personnel, WXII reported.
Deputies said they believe the victim was not targeted and it appears the shooting was accidental at this time, possibly from a bullet fired into the air from some distance away, but the investigation continues, WXII reported.