Approximately 1,000 people in the US are struck by lightning every year. Contrary to popular belief, however, not all of these people are outside while struck. Some of them are struck while inside their very homes.
The insurance industry estimates about 6.5% of all property/casualty claims are related to lightning strikes. Some newer homes are equipped to absorb a lightning strike; however, in most cases the electrical paths are available for lighting surges to enter the home. The most common strikes occur to a network of power, phone and cable television – especially if the network is elevated. The wiring then conducts the surges directly to the attached appliances. Aside from the possibility of anyone using the appliances of being electrocuted, the electrical device itself will be damaged.
Safeguards that reduce the risk of lightning strikes to a home and prevent electrocution to the people inside include grounding of the electrical service to a ground electrode, protectors for powered broadband connections and telephone lines, and the connecting of metallic piping to the building ground.