Lightning strike in sky on a mountain road and headlight from other vehicles seen through a rainy windshield.

What Should I Do If I’m Driving in a Thunder or Lightning Storm?

Fact or myth: Your rubber tires will stop lightning from striking your car.

If you answered “myth”, you’re correct! Many people believe that rubber tires will protect them while driving through a lightning storm, but this is not the case. Surprisingly, it is your car’s metal body that could offer a level of protection.

If you’re caught in a storm while driving, you are safest in an enclosed, metal vehicle. (This means hard-topped cars with all of the windows shut.) If your car is struck by lightning, the current will flow through the metal body of the vehicle to the ground. Open and soft-topped vehicles (e.g., Jeeps, convertibles) will not provide as much protection. For this reason, try to avoid driving in an open or soft-topped vehicle if you know a storm is coming.

Here are some additional tips to help keep you safe if you’re driving through a storm: