We discuss the dangers of lightning today for Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Lightning is a serious danger when it comes to thunderstorms! Lightning is one of nature’s deadliest phenomenon, claiming roughly 55 to 60 lives every year across the United States and injuring hundreds more.
When a thunderstorm is approaching, it is important to seek shelter as soon as possible to stay safe. 
Safety tips to follow to stay protected from lightning:
1. When you hear thunder or see lightning, seek shelter.
2. Never seek shelter underneath a tree.
3. Stay away from windows.
4. Do not take a bath or shower during a storm.
5. Avoid metal pipes.
6. Stay off electronic devices connected to the wall
Where is the safest place?
The safest and most obvious place to be in a thunderstorm is indoors. If lightning strikes a house or a building directly, it will tend to follow the available paths to ground, including the electrical wiring, plumbing, cable or telephone lines, antennas and/or steel framework.
What happens if lightning strikes your car?
While a car provides some protection from lightning, as the metal frame directs lightning currents to the ground, vehicles can still be damaged by a strike. Lightning damage to a vehicle includes pitting, arcing and burning along with electrical system issues.
The National Lightning Safety Institute suggests safely pulling off to the side of the road, waiting out the storm, turning off the engine, putting one’s hands in one’s lap and not touching inside items such as door and window handles, steering wheels and gear shifts. Heavy equipment such as bulldozers and backhoes with rollover canopies are safe during thunderstorms, but riding mowers and golf carts are not.
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