5 Things You Should Never Do During a Lightning Storm
Playing in the rain is one thing – but playing in lightning is an entirely different story. Lightning is the third most frequent cause of storm-related deaths in the United States, resulting in about 30 deaths and several hundred injuries every year.
Lightning injuries can take many different forms: burns, cardiac arrest, bursting blood vessels, etc. Our bodies simply weren’t built to conduct 300kV of electricity! We’ll identify 5 things you should never do when lightning strikes:
1.Stand in the Storm
Rule #1, When thunder roars go indoors! The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (the CDC) advises avoiding open places like porches, gazebos, golf courses and parks. Safe shelters include homes, offices, shopping centers, and hard-top vehicles with the windows rolled up.
2.Use Your Water
NEVER bathe, shower, wash dishes or have any other contact with water during a thunderstorm because lightning can travel though plumbing and electrify you.
A boat sitting in the middle of an open body of water during a thunderstorm is essentially a sitting duck to a lightning strike. Not only are you outside, in the open, on water – you are inside of a vessel made up of large amounts of metal and other conductive materials.
Lightning strikes at the tallest point of least resistance. On an open body of water? You are the tallest point of least resistance.
Not only do you yourself face immediate danger, your boat can be completely wiped out by a lightning strike. It could fry your electrical system or destroy the engine. Check the forecast before heading out on the water, and make sure you’ve got boat insurance to keep everyone safe.
4.Touch Concrete Structures
Concrete walls, floors and buildings typically have metal wires or bars through them. If lightning strikes the structure, and you’re leaning on a wall, you could be electrocuted.
5.Use Electronics Plugged Into the Wall
Do NOT use your computers, laptops, gaming systems, washers, dryers, stoves or anything else connected to an electrical outlet.
Lightning can travel through electrical systems, radio and television reception systems, and any metal wires or bars in concrete walls or flooring.
You can safeguard your electronics and appliances by installing surge protectors in your home.
Lightning strikes may be rare, but they still happen and can cause severe injury – even death. Always take thunderstorms seriously.