Each year, people are killed and hurt during severe thunderstorms. Sometimes these tragedies could have been prevented. For this reason, every year we should review the steps we need to take to keep ourselves and our families’ safe during a thunderstorm.
First, of all, we should never take a thunderstorm lightly. Each and every thunderstorm could have the potential of turning into a deadly storm. They can produce deadly lightning, dangerous winds and damaging hail. They can even lead to tornados. All across the country there have been numerous bad thunderstorms reported. Many of these storms have caused harm to many people, including deaths.
Now that you have hopefully realized the potential damage a thunderstorm can do, here are the steps you need to take when the next one occurs in your area:
1. Take shelter immediately. If you are in an automobile, do not touch anything metal.
2. Try to listen to the news to see just how severe the thunderstorm is being predicted. The National Weather Services tries its best to predict storms within 30 minutes before they occur.
3. Know the difference between a thunderstorm watch and a thunderstorm warning. A watch means that conditions are favorable of a thunderstorm occurring. A warning means that one has been spotted in your location is in the path of the storm.
4. Stay indoors. Lightning is not your friend. If you can hear thunder, you can be struck with lighting. It is that simple.
5. Unplug any appliances that you are afraid could become lightning struck. This can include: toasters, microwaves, televisions, computers, etc. Those that are not easy to unplug should be kept plugged into a surge protector to help protect it from electrical surges such as lightning strikes.
6. Stay away from water and water pipes. If lighting strikes close by, it can travel through your water pipes. This is why you should never take a bath or do dishes during a thunderstorm.
7. Stay off the phone. Lightning can travel through the phone lines.
8. Stay away from windows. These can break during severe storms and lightning can pass through them.
9. Do make sure you have a battery powered flashlight near by and a cell phone, in case your power goes out because of the phone.
10. Do stay calm. Yes, be aware of what is happening outside. Yet, stay calm. If the thunderstorm were to turn severe you will be better able to handle any emergencies if you are calm.
Remember never take a thunderstorm lightly. That next thunderstorm could be just a small summer storm or it could turn into a massive storm that could cause severe damage. Treat them all with respect.