Florida Woman Photographs 'Fireball' in Thunderstorm

Rita Krill, 53, of Naples, Fla., got a little more than she bargained for while shooting a severe thunderstorm in her backyard Oct. 5.

"It was about 100 feet from my yard," Krill said. "I was out there videoing it. My puppy was out there. She usually doesn't flinch too much at storms. She's used to it. And then, boom, the lighting struck and you could obviously hear my reaction."

Krill can't believe she captured the lightning striking the up-lighting in her next door neighbor's yard on camera, which blew out the light and caused large electrical sparks.

What she called a "fireball" in the video she uploaded to YouTube that night.

"What's incredible is what are the chances of this happening just as I was panning that direction?" Krill asked. "My next door neighbor has up-lighting on the trees next door in her yard. It completely decapitated the lighting unit itself. It exploded. The tree wasn't charred or burned. It just shaved it clean."

Krill says Naples is the lightning capital of North America, but she's still fascinated by the thunderstorms because she's originally from California and not used to that kind of severe weather.

"On the weather reports, they actually have a clicker of lightning strikes per minute," Krill said. "I'm from California, so I had never even seen raindrops this size, let alone lightning.

"We get these really great thunderstorms in the evenings. Last week, we had a couple every night. You have a beautiful morning, we went to the dog part, and then all of a sudden the clouds fill up with water and get really gray and they just drop, let loose."

Despite Krill's immediate reaction to run scared back into the house, her 10-month-old puppy, Marge, was hardly fazed by the loud lightning bolt.

"My first reaction was just to high tail it back into the house. My dog is just a puppy. She's only 10-months-old. She thought the Fourth of July was just fantastic. She's a funny puppy, unlike my other prissy dog that was hiding under the couch," Krill joked.

No one was injured by the lightning strike.