Sunday, July 12

14-year-old boy believed electrocuted by lightning


SERIAN: A 14-year-old boy died after he was believed to have been electrocuted from a lightning strike while simultaneously listening to music on his mobile phone and charging the device.

The deceased, identified as Bartholomew Robert, was relaxing in the living room together with his parents at their house at Kampung Murud Plaman when the incident happened late Friday afternoon.

District police chief DSP Chung Aik Peng, who confirmed receiving a report of the tragedy, said Bartholomew’s father told his officers that his son was using a pair of earphones to listen to music on his mobile phone while charging the device at a wall socket at the same time.

“According to the father, there was an impending storm with thunder and lightning at the time of incident. The victim was relaxing with his parents in the living room when he appeared to suffer an electric shock before collapsing,” said Chung, when contacted yesterday.

The victim, a Form 2 student at SMK Taee, was rushed to Serian hospital but passed away about 30 minutes later.

When asked, Chung said it was possible that Bartholomew was electrocuted from a lightning strike on the house, as his father had heard a flash of lightning followed by loud thunder moments before his son collapsed.

“A post mortem has been scheduled for Monday (tomorrow) to determine the cause of death, and we can only release the body for burial after the procedure is completed,” he said, adding the case has been classified as sudden death.