East Lyme Public Safety wants you to know how to protect yourself from a lightning strike.
Protect yourself from a lightning strike by knowing the signs. Lightning strikes are more prevalent before and directly after a thunderstorm. Even when the storm is 10 miles away you can be struck by lightning. Lightning strikes have killed on average 58 people per year. Summer is the deadliest time for lightning casualties. Many lightning strikes occur on golf courses, beaches, and play grounds. Protect yourself from a lightning strike by following these tips.
Step 1. Seek indoor shelter whenever the clouds turn dark and thunder is in the distance. If you have no access to a home or building then sit in your car, roll up the windows, wait until the thunderstorm passes before exiting your car.
Step 2. Standing under a tree during a thunderstorm could be a casualty. Lightning travels between the clouds and the ground. Therefore, lighting will strike the first thing it comes across tree, tower, building, and fence. It is safer to stand sixty feet away from the tree.
Step 3. Prevent a lightning strike with the safety position. If you are outdoors during a thunderstorm, walk away from anything that is metal, such as golf clubs, cart, or playground rides, swings, and slides. Also distance yourself from trees; it is better to be in a clearing as these items will attract lightning. Crouch down and balance on the balls of your feet. Stay in this safety position until the storm passes.
Step 4. Teach children to seek shelter when skies turn dark and a storm approaches. In the event that children are outdoors during a thunderstorm, they need to resume the safety position. Crouch down, balance on balls of their feet and cover their ears.
Step 5. Traveling on a motorcycle or riding a bicycle is like riding on a lightning beacon. When a thunderstorm approaches, pull over and walk 70 feet from the motorcycle or bicycle until the storm passes.
If you feel tingling; such as your hair stands up on your arms or your head, lightning is close.
While inside play a board game, cards or take a nap during a thunderstorm, avoid anything that is electrical, laptop, television, blow dryer, stove, washing machine or clothes dryer. Do not take a shower or bath and do not swim in indoor or outdoor pool during a thunderstorm. Warning, You are not safe watching a thunderstorm from your deck or porch. Go indoors and stay away from windows.
Please share this important safety information with your family and friends. We have all witnessed how unpredictable mother nature can be.
Enjoy your summer and stay safe!