With Lightning Safety Awareness Week upon us, it's time to revisit the dangers of
thunderstorms. Over the last 30 years in the United States, more than 1500 people have been
killed by lightning, and thousands more have been seriously injured. Just this year, there
have already been 7 U.S. deaths. One of these deaths occurred when a man was picking
blueberries with his grandson on a mountain. Mother Nature has no pity, or remorse.
The key thing to remember is that if you can hear thunder, or see lightning, get to safety.
In this case, safety means a safe shelter, and that means either a sturdy building, or a
hard-topped automobile. If you get to a building, there are ways to keep yourself safe while
inside. You should avoid using a landline phone and all computers. Also, you should stay away
from water, so no using the sink or shower. It's also a good idea to unplug your major
electronic devices during a thunderstorm, such as a home computer. This can save your hard
drive from getting fried.
Also remember to avoid high places during a thunderstorm. Stay away from trees, fences and
hilltops, as the lightning will often look for objects that are higher than their
Here are some helpful tips to keep you safe from lightning:
• When Thunder Roars, Get Indoors!
• If You Can Hear It, Fear It!
• If You Can See It, Flee It!
-Kevin Coskren, ABC6 StormTracker WeatherTeam