Lightning blast misses man by seconds

Missed him by that much...

CCTV has been captured of the moment a UK man narrowly escaped death when lightning ripped a tree into flying shards of wood seconds after he walked past it.

Bernard Williams, a 55-year-old from West Yorkshire in northern England, had just left his car and was running to his house during a thunderstorm on August 28.

Footage shows Mr Williams grab his gym bag from the boot of his car before dashing away.

Barely three seconds after he leaves, a lightning bolt hits a willow tree behind his car, sending a 3m-long piece of wood flying across the road to the spot where he was standing.

More jagged pieces of wood can be seen flying across the road, hitting his car and neighbouring houses.

Mr Williams' wife Alison, 43, had driven home behind her husband and watched the scene unfold.

"Just seconds after Bernard had parked up and grabbed his gym bag, the tree across suddenly lit up," Mrs Williams told The Daily Mail.

"If he had been stood at the car seconds later he would almost certainly have been killed or maimed," she said.

Debris from the tree smashed a neighbour's window and tore off tiles on another house.

But Mr Williams said he did not even realise the blast was caused by lightning at the time.

"For some reason I thought it was a sonic boom that had shattered the back window of the car," he said.

Mr Williams only found out what happened after his wife rang him from her car to see if he was okay.