Did you know that lightning reaches temperatures 5 times hotter than the surface of the sun?

Lightning safety can save your life!

Have you ever found yourself outdoors, when suddenly you hear thunder begin to rumble in the distance? When this happens, do you know the safest place to avoid getting wet and to protect yourself from being struck by lightning?

If you find yourself outdoors during a thunderstorm, there is little you can do to reduce your risk of being struck by lightning. Plan ahead and watch weather forecasts to allow yourself time to move to a safe location before a storm arrives. If you are unable to move to shelter, here are some suggestions to avoid lightning:

  • Avoid standing in open fields or on high ground
  • Steer clear of tall trees or objects
  • Do not stay with a group- spread out to avoid lightning current traveling to people standing nearby
  • Stay away from water and metal objects that carry lightning currents over long distances
  • What are the best steps to take when storms approach?

    Stay safe by moving indoors to a building that contains electricity and plumbing, or get into a nearby vehicle and keep the windows closed. As lightning strikes, it can enter buildings through wires or pipes outside the structure, through the ground, or by directly striking the structure. The current from lightning can travel through electrical, plumbing, telephone, and radio or television systems.

    During a storm, avoid talking on corded landlines. Don’t wash your hands, take a shower or wash dishes. Stay off of balconies and porches. Avoid exterior windows and doors that contain metal. Be sure to move pets to a safe location, away from trees and metal objects such as runners or kennels.

    Check out the video below from the National Weather Service in Missoula, MT for more tips to help you practice lightning safety. When thunder roars, go indoors!