Q:

What are some tips for lightning safety and preparedness?

A:

Quick Answer

The best way to protect yourself in a lightning storm is to avoid being outside during one, but if you are forced to be outdoors during a lightning storm, make yourself as small a target as possible. Lightning tends to strike the highest point, so making yourself a low target lessens the chance of a strike. Stay away from trees, power lines or other tall objects.

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Full Answer

If you feel your hair standing on end during a thunderstorm, immediately crouch to your heels, place your feet together and cover your ears. This makes you a smaller target and prevents electrical current from flowing through you from a nearby ground strike. It also protects your ears from the sound of thunder. Try to get underneath a sheltered structure as quickly as possible; crouching is the best way to protect yourself if shelter is not available.

If you are indoors, avoid using a landline phone, taking a shower or being near other sources of running water. If lightning strikes nearby, the current could enter your plumbing and travel through you via the water.

If someone near you is struck by lightning, contact emergency personnel, begin CPR and position the person with his torso and legs elevated above his head. Avoid removing burned clothing.

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