Lightning Safety: When thunder roars, go indoors

By Andrew Freiden - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - It's lightning safety week - a week when the National Weather Service highlights the danger of lightning.

One of nature's most beautiful sights, it can also be its most damaging. Lightning can knock out power, start fires, and cause death and injuries. In fact, in a typical year lightning kills 58 people; more than either hurricanes or tornadoes.

Last year lightning killed 36 people in the United States. Hundreds more were injured. All of those 36 people were outdoors when they were struck - leading us to the number one rule of lightning safety: "When thunder roars, go indoors"

Thunder is the sound lighting makes, and it's nature's warning. Lightning can strike up to 10 miles away from a storm. If you hear thunder, you are close enough to get struck.

When you see lightning, start counting. Stop when you hear thunder. For every 5 seconds, the lightning is 1 mile away. If you are caught outdoors, don't hide under a tree. Quickly get to a sturdy building or your car. Cars provide protection from lightning strikes much more than a picnic shelter.

Have fun this summer but when storms hit - get inside.

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