An unexpected thunderstorm delivered rain showers and bright flashes of lighting that could be seen across Orange County on the evening of Thursday, Sept. 9.

The storm, which lasted a few hours, gave Irvine residents plenty of photo and video opportunities to showcase a rare occurrence in Southern California. While the lightning was visually stimulating for Orange County residents, it also kept the Orange County Fire Authority busy, with lightning being blamed for at least one residential fire in the city of Aliso Viejo.


By Friday, Sept. 10, residents across Irvine and Orange County were sharing their best photos of Thursday night’s lightning show on social media platforms like Instagram and Reddit.

Instagram user @francisgtruman shared a slow-motion video of lighting from his home in Irvine.


@Yovi_Life shared more still images from the lightning over Irvine.

Redditor _glowingeyes_ shared a video taken while driving on the freeway.

Multi-forked lightning strike over Irvine from orangecounty

Reddit user Juanabove shared a photo from lighting in their neighborhood in Irvine.

Just got this pic here in Irvine!!! from orangecounty

San Clemente-based Redditor @RustySpear11 shared a few colorful photos of lightning near the water tower.

“I’ve been seeing everyone sharing their lighting pics, here’s mine…” @RustySpear11 wrote.

Other videos show lightning followed by green flashes, which some suggested could be a blown transformer.

Transformer blew out? Seen from Irvine from orangecounty


Reddit user u/drewmonkey shared several photos of the lightning storm from “25 floors up” in Irvine.

Other photos, as found on Instagram user’s @StatefarmLaura, show lighting brighten the night sky over Irvine.

Instagram user @Adgravz said he forgot his camera, but luckily had his iPhone.

@WizKid_Gx tagged Irvine in a photo posted to Instagram with the simple caption, “Big Bolts.”