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Bill Isles, Wichita Man, Struck By Lightning Hours After Buying Mega Millions Lottery Tickets

Posted: 04/ 1/2012 5:53 pm Updated: 04/ 1/2012 10:42 pm

As the adage goes: you have a better chance of getting struck by lightning than winning the Mega Millions jackpot.

For Bill Isles, a 48-year-old Wichita, Kan. man, that saying became painfully true on Thursday, according to KCTV-5 News.

After buying three tickets for Friday's Mega Millions lottery jackpot, Reuters reports, Isles was walking to his car when he said to a friend that he had "a better chance of getting struck by lightning" than winning the $640 million.

Just hours later, Isles, who KCTV-5 News reports in the video above is a storm spotter with the National Weather Service and was operating a ham radio at the time, was struck by lightning outside his home.

"My whole body was twitching," Isles told KAKE News. "My radio had flown a little further ahead of me. I managed to grab it and call out."

According to The Wichita Eagle, a fellow storm spotter heard him and called emergency officials, who responded and took Isles to the hospital. He was released on Friday.

Luckily, he wasn't struck directly and didn't suffer any burns, according to The Eagle, although he told KAKE that he still has muscle spasms.

According to the National Weather Service, lightning strikes are responsible for about 55 reported deaths per year in the United States. About ten percent of those who are struck by lightning are killed.

You have a 1 in 775,000 chance of getting struck by lightning in a given year, while the odds of winning Friday's record jackpot were 1 in 176 million.

The New York State Department of Health advises those who find themselves in thunder or lightning storms to seek shelter immediately. When you're inside, be sure to stay away from open windows as well as sinks, showers, toilets and appliances, as lightning can "flow through these..." and "'jump' to a person," according to the Department of Health. Don't use landlines connected to the wall as the current can flow through the phone, although you can use cordless phones or cell phones.

If you're in a car, it's best to roll the windows up and stay inside.

For more, including what to do if you find yourself unable to seek shelter in a lightning storm as well as how to help people who've been struck, click over to the New York State Department of Health.

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Filed by Timothy Stenovec  |