Walt Disney World Area Is the Most Dangerous Place in the U. S. for This Phenomenon

cinderella castle and lightning

The Walt Disney World area earned a “hair-raising” title in 2022.

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According to Vaisala, a Finland-based entity that uses weather and environmental observation techniques to track global weather patterns, an area just two miles from the Walt Disney World Resort was the lightning capital of the country in 2022. The area, specifically referred to as Four Corners, Florida (because it’s where four Florida counties–Orange, Osceola, Polk, and Lake–meet), had 1,229 lightning events last year.

That’s 1,229 lightning events per square mile, not in total. The Vaisala Company defines a “lightning event” as any cloud-to-cloud lightning strike or any cloud-to-ground lightning strike.

The Four Corners area of the Sunshine State is located just two miles from the Walt Disney World Resort, and according to the report issued by Vaisala, the Central Florida location took the number one spot from Flatonia, Texas, a town 90 miles east of San Antonio, Texas, that saw 1,043 lightning events per square mile in 2021.

Four Corners One Vision |

Credit: OneVisionFourCorners

Four Corners, Florida, had nearly 200 lightning strikes per square mile more than Flatonia, Texas, did in the previous year.

The Sunshine State earned an honor as a whole in 2022–for the number-one spot in the United States for total lightning density. In 2022, Florida had 285 lightning events per square mile–a 27% increase when compared with 2021.

Lightning strikes aren’t uncommon at Disney World. In 2022, lightning struck locations on Disney World property more than once. In May, a magnificent bolt of lightning struck EPCOT near Spaceship Earth.


Wow! Lightning strikes spaceship earth at Epcot Disney World during Kristen & Adam’s live stream on Streaming The Magic #disneyparks #spaceshipearth #lightningbolt

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In July, a bolt of lightning lit up the night sky behind the Haunted Mansion at Magic Kingdom, and then lightning struck EPCOT again in September 2022. In fact, Disney World sees a lot of lightning strikes, and while there’s no such thing as a “safe place” during a lightning storm, Disney World does incorporate the use of lightning rods across its property, and each one is hidden in plain sight.

Vintage Walt Disney World: Mickey's On Top of the World | Disney Parks Blog

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At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the Mickey Mouse that stands atop the high tower of the Crossroads kiosk near the entrance to the park is lightning rod; let’s just say lightning is drawn to Mickey’s right ear. The rod is made of copper and, as with any other non-Mickey lightning rod, it attracts the lightning to it. Once a bolt strikes the rod, the rod channels millions of volts of energy from the lightning through the copper around the structure and into the ground below.

About Becky Burkett

Becky's from the Lone Star State and has been writing since she was 10 and encountered her first Disney Park when she was 11. It was love at first Main Street Electrical Parade. Joy is blank lined journals, 0.7 mm pens, and all things Walt, Woody and Buzz, PIXAR, Imagineering, Sleeping Beauty (make it blue!), Disney Parks history and EPCOT. At Disney World, you'll find her croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. If you can dream, you really can do it!