Lightning Safety Tips
Before Lightning Strikes
- Keep an eye on the sky. Look for darkening skies, flashes of light, or increasing wind. Listen for sounds of thunder.
- If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning. Go to a safe shelter immediately.
- Monitor weather forecasts.
When a Storm Approaches
- Find shelter in a building or car. Keep car windows closed.
- Avoid telephone lines, metal pipes, the telephone and electrical appliances.
- Avoid taking a shower or a bath or running water for any other purpose.
- Turn off the air conditioner. Power surges from lightning can over load the compressor, resulting in a costly repair job.
- Draw blinds and shades over windows. If windows break due to objects blown by the wind, the shades will prevent glass from shattering in your home.
If Caught Outside
- If you are in the woods, take shelter under shorter trees.
- If you are boating or swimming, get to land and find the nearest shelter immediately.
- Go to a low-lying, open place away from trees, poles or metal objects. Make sure the place you pick is not prone to flooding.
- Squat low to the ground. Place your hands on your knees with your head between them. Make yourself the smallest target possible.
After the Storm Passes
- Stay away from storm-damaged areas.
- Listen to the radio for information and instructions.
If Someone is Struck by Lightning
- People struck by lightning carry no electrical charge and can be handled safely.
- Call 9-1-1 immediately.
- The injured person has received an electrical shock and may be burned, both where they were struck and where the electricity left their body. Check for burns in both places.
- Give first aid. If breathing has stopped, begin rescue breathing. If the heart has stopped beating, a trained person should give CPR.