A passenger has caught on video a direct lightning strike on a Delta Boeing 737 at Atlanta airport.
The video below is extremely interesting. Shot at Atlanta airport during a thunderstorm by Jack Perkins, a passenger of another plane, it shows a lightning strike hit a Delta Boeing 737 on the taxiway.
No one was hurt as a consequence of the lightning as the plane is shielded by Faraday Cage, that blocks out external static electrical fields: charges redistribute on the conducting material and don’t affect the cage’s interior.
In simple words: if hit by a lightning aircraft let the current pass through the fuselage until ground, preserving the systems’ integrity. Furthermore, all commercial and military aircraft have been designed to meet several safety lightning-related requirements needed to get the airworthiness certifications required.
Generally speaking, lightning strikes are rare and do not represent a real threat to military and civil planes, even though, in the 1980s, some F-16 Fighting Falcon jets were lost after being hit. In one case, the lightning ignited the vapors in the empty centerline tank, which exploded causing extended damage to the aircraft’s hydraulic system.