Lightning Safety Tips

by Safety Connection

This week a video went viral showing a pine tree being decimated by lightning in a high school parking lot in Wautoma, Wisconsin.

Screenshot courtesy of National Weather Service Green Bay, WI

Did you know that lightning can travel up to 10 miles away from any rainfall? If you can hear thunder you are close enough to be struck by lightning.

Lightning is hotter than the surface of the sun, and lightning bolts strike the United States about 25 million times each year. The safest place to be in a thunderstorm is indoors, but if you need to seek shelter in a vehicle try to avoid touching anything metal that could conduct electricity. If you can’t seek shelter indoors or in a vehicle, avoid open areas, tall trees and utility poles. If someone near you is struck by lightning, call 911 and start performing CPR immediately (people cannot hold an electrical charge so don’t be afraid to touch the victim).

If you spend a lot of time outdoors and you carry a smartphone with you, consider downloading an app like My Lightning Tracker that can warn you when lightning strikes have been detected in your area.

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