Lightning strike in California kills woman and two dogs

Montgomery County has begun retroactively charging for ambulance rides from Jan. 1. (Photo: Examiner file) Andrew Harnik

Lightning strike in California kills woman and two dogs

Asher Notheis

June 23, 12:41 PM June 23, 12:41 PM

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A woman walking her two dogs in Southern California was killed after she was struck by lightning early Wednesday morning.

Antonia Mendoza, 51, was taking her daily walk with her two puppies, Luna and Chubby, along the riverbed in Pico Rivera, California, when a thunderstorm moved through the area and a lighting bolt struck all three of them. A person later found them dead on the trail and called for help, according to Fox 11.

“Today’s incident is a strong reminder that people and organizations must exercise extreme caution and stay indoors as much as possible during a thunderstorm,” city officials wrote in a press release. “While lightning strikes are rare in Southern California, they occurred frequently overnight with over 3,700 lightning strikes recorded in the region.”


Ahead of the storm, the city shut down all outdoor activities for the rest of the day, and all city crews were also ordered to work indoors.

The lightning was brought through Southern California by a monsoonal storm that began in Baja California and was accompanied by scattered thunderstorms and lightning. Several beaches in the area were closed due to lightning.

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The last lightning fatality in Southern California was in 2014 when a 20-year-old man was struck and killed.

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