Aug. 3, 1986 was one of the most tragic days in Ocean City’s history.
During a violent afternoon thunderstorm, a lightning bolt struck the beach at 2nd Street leaving three dead and two injured, one of them critically (he would die the next day at Peninsula Regional Medical in Salisbury).
The deceased were all from Washington, DC and northern Virginia. They had come to Ocean City as part of a tour group and had sought shelter under an umbrella when the storm began. The fifth victim, the beach stand operator on 2nd Street, was also hit by the bolt but was about 10 yards away and survived. He was treated and released from the hospital the next day.
Today the Ocean City Beach Patrol clears the beach whenever lightning is sighted.
Photo courtesy of the Ocean City Beach Patrol