A teenage boy has died after a lightning strike at Orchard Beach in the Bronx sent half a dozen people to the hospital Thursday, FDNY and NYPD officials said.
The lightning hit on the beach close to the shore as strong storms swept through the area just before 5:30 p.m., fire officials said. The severe weather hit so quickly, catching people looking for relief from the intense heat and humidity at the beach off guard.
Seven people, who were sitting on the sand as the storms arrived, were brought to Jacobi Medical Center, including a teen boy who was severely injured and in cardiac arrest.
The 13-year-old died at the hospital, police confirmed the next morning. They identified the teen boy as Carlos Ramos.
The other six victims were expected to survive. Among that group were four minors, including a 5-year-old boy, all listed in stable condition as of Friday.
An NYC Parks spokesperson said lifeguards had cleared all swimmers out of the water and staff made announcements over the public address systems for people to clear the beach prior to the incident.
Those injured were unable to get off the beach in time, officials said.
One beachgoer, Raul Dejesus, said the storm system "came out of nowhere" and the sky suddenly turned dark with clouds.
"Everybody started running to the bathroom and when we were in the bathroom, we kept hearing these thunders. Boom boom boom. We heard screams and yelling and, oh man, somebody got struck," he said.