Man struck by lightning in NW Harris Co.

May 10, 2013 8:05:11 PM PDT
Lightning from Friday's storms in northwest Houston left a city employee in critical condition. Dozens of people were just a few feet away when Jeremy Garcia, a city of Houston public works inspector, was struck by lightning and thrown out of his socks and boots.

It happened around 10am near Seamist and Haverhill. As they watched him being loaded into an ambulance, many told us it could have happened to them.

"(I walk by here) all the time, every day, this is where my office is," said nearby worker Ruhi Tab. "I'd like to win the lottery but not this kind of lottery."

"It was loud," said witness Mark Martinez. "It sort of felt like it shook the building where I'm at."

Garcia and a contractor had almost made it to his car when lightning hit him directly and delivered a shock to the contractor. They were under a tree, where a nearby office worker performed CPR on Garcia, who was initially unresponsive. He was revived and taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital. Garcia is a 35-year-old married father with three children.

"He's the kind of guy who hits the streets every single day to make sure that our quality of life is good," said Alvin Wright, city of Houston public works department spokesperson. "So we need the citizens of Houston to pray for him right now and his health."

On the grass, a scorched scrap of leather from Garcia's boot and a piece of denim from his jeans are among the items left behind. His pen and water bottle an eerie reminder of how destructive lightning can be.

A hospital spokesperson confirms that Garcia remains in critical condition. Co-workers and witnesses say they are offering up their prayers for his recovery. The contractor, whose name has not been released, was not as seriously injured.

Find Katie on Facebook at ABC13KatieMcCall or on Twitter at @13katiemccall


Load Comments