(WKBN) – This week, June 21-27, is Lightning Safety Awareness Week in Ohio. With more thunderstorms this time of year, it is a great time to review lightning safety.
There is really no safe place outside when thunderstorms are in the area. If you hear thunder, you are likely within striking distance of the storm. Just remember: “When thunder roars, go indoors.”
There are about 25 million cloud-to-ground lightning strikes in the U.S. per year. (Paul explained the different types of lightning strikes in this video.)
Lightning can strike as far as 25 miles away from its parent thunderstorm. Lightning strikes kill about 50 Americans each year. According to the National Weather Service, so far in 2020, there have been four deaths from a lightning strike.
Only about 10% of people struck by lightning are actually killed. The other 90% may deal with other long-term effects including, headaches, memory loss and other discomforts.
Being inside a house or other building is your safest option during a thunderstorm. There are still some lightning safety guidelines you must follow while inside a place of shelter to keep yourself safe. Stay away from windows and doors. It’s best to be in an interior room.
Don’t use a corded phone during a thunderstorm. Cordless or cell phones are safe to use as long as they aren’t being charged. Don’t touch electrical equipment or cords. Any device that uses electricity is susceptible to a lightning strike.
Try to avoid plumbing. Both the metal in the plumbing and the water are good conductors of electricity. If you are stuck in a car during a thunderstorm, roll up the windows.
More lightning videos available: