SCMP Tuesday, August 21, 2001

Lightning kills hiker, 34, lost in Tuen Mun


A hiker was killed by lightning after getting lost in Tuen Mun on Saturday.
The American man, identified only as E. Meehan, 34, was found unconscious after a helicopter from the Government Flying Service joined the search for him on a hillside near Yeung Siu Hang football field at about 6am.
He was airlifted to Tuen Mun Hospital where he was declared dead. A woman hiker found with him, identified as M. Reynolds, 57, was unhurt.
The pair were part of a group of 50 on a hiking trip from Castle Peak Temple to Lung Kwu Tan.
"The hikers were expected to reach their destination at 5pm on Saturday, but there was no sign of the pair by 5pm," a police spokesman said.
Ms Reynolds told police they lost their way in a heavy rainstorm and Meehan collapsed after being struck by lightning. She said they were trapped as they had no mobile phone to raise the alarm.
The Observatory hoisted a thunderstorm warning between 3.55pm and 6pm on Saturday, when Tuen Mun recorded 30mm of rainfall.
Dr Lo Wing-lok, a legislator and president of the Medical Association, said accidents involving lightning were rare but had a high fatality rate, and that people should stay away from trees or pointed objects.
On June 5, worker Lam Chiu-kei, 43, died after lightning hit a cable he was repairing in a sewage treatment tunnel in Ma On Shan. On the same day three mechanics were injured at Chek Lap Kok when they suffered lightning shocks.
On August 24, 1995, a man died after he was believed to have been struck by lightning on a Discovery Bay hillside.
In 1974, six people who had climbed to the peak of Fung Wong Shan on Lantau Island were hit by lightning. Three were killed and three injured.