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Lightning hits Acropolis in Greece injuring 4, site intact

Photo: AP


A lightning bolt struck the Acropolis in Athens during a rainstorm Wednesday, lightly injuring two visitors and two guards but causing no damage to the country’s most famous ancient site, Greek officials said.

A culture ministry statement said the citadel’s lightning conductor, which is set apart from the 2,500-year-old marble buildings, was hit. The impact shattered glass windows in two nearby guard booths, and the guards inside as well as two female visitors were taken to hospital with light cuts.

The hilltop UNESCO World Heritage site is Greece’s most popular archaeological site, attracting 3.15 million visitors last year.

The ministry said none of the Acropolis monuments, which include the 5th Century B.C. Parthenon and Erechtheion temples, were damaged. The two visitors were discharged from hospital after receiving first aid while the guards remained for precautionary reasons.

Much of Greece has been beset by unusually persistent rainfall over recent days, with a hailstorm carpeting central Athens in white on Monday.

The Acropolis is one of the highest points in the city center and has suffered severely from lightning strikes in the past.