This week is Lightning Safety Awareness Week and it shouldn't be a shock that there are things you can do to keep yourself safe when lightning crashes.
Lightning kills, this is true but it also can maim, leaving individuals with physical, neurological and psychological wounds that last a lifetime.
It is important to take actions when thunderstorms threaten your area to keep yourself safe.
Thunderstorms can happen year-round here in Southwest Georgia and where there's thunder there's lightning and the potential for trouble.
All thunderstorms produce lightning and for the majority of thunderstorms you won't get a watch or a warning before the storm strikes.
There are steps you should know and actions you should take before you hear that first clap of thunder.
â¢ When Thunder Roars â" Go Indoors: Go indoors if, after seeing lightning, you cannot count to 30 before hearing thunder. Stay indoors for 30 minutes after hearing the last clap of thunder.
â¢ If a storm does approach, find shelter in a sturdy building or hard top automobile. Keep all windows closed.
â¢ Telephone lines and metal pipes can conduct electricity. Unplug appliances. Avoid using the telephone or any electrical appliances.
â¢ Avoid taking a bath or shower, or running water for any purpose. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
â¢ If you are caught outside and cannot find shelter, go to a low-lying, open place away from trees, poles or metal objects. Make sure the place you pick is not subject to flooding.
â¢ Is someone is struck by lightning, they carry no electrical charge and can be touched safely. Call 911 and get medical help to the victim.
â¢ If swimming: Get out of the water and into a safe structure or vehicle if available.
â¢ If in a boat, get to shore and seek shelter. If you cannot get to shore and you are in a boat without a cabin, set an anchor and get as low as possible in the vessel until the danger passes.
This is only a partial list of situations and precautions when it comes to lightning safety. Much more can be found on this at www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov.
Share this with your Thunder Buddy and others to keep everyone safe when lightning crashes.