The Lightning Protection Institute is a nationwide not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to promote lightning protection education, awareness, and safety. The lightning protection industry began in the United States when Benjamin Franklin postulated that lightning was electricity, and a metal rod could be used to carry the lightning away from a building. Lightning is the direct cause of over 50 deaths and 400 injuries each year, and it is difficult to protect individuals in exposed outdoor areas. Direct lightning strikes cause fire damage in excess of $200 million per year, and insurance companies pay claims in the billions of dollars associated with lightning either directly or indirectly. Most of these property losses could be minimized, if not eliminated, through the implementation of proper lightning protection for structures. LPI is dedicated to ensuring that today’s lightning protection systems provide the best possible quality in both materials and installation practices for maximum safety.
If lightning does not strike a property directly, but next to it, the lightning current spreads in a ring in the ground and can thus reach the inside through the supply lines. If the lightning current is not discharged by the proper protective equipotential bonding, it can spread uncontrollably throughout the entire building.