When lightning strikes
When a thunderstorm roars overhead, use caution. Lightning produced during summer thunderstorms can be deadly, so don’t become a statistic.
- Stay indoors during a thunderstorm. Unplug televisions, computers and other appliances.
- Avoid water and stay away from windows and doors.
- Avoid using telephones, unless it is an emergency.
- Avoid high ground and open spaces. If lightning is very close and no building is nearby, go to the lowest spot, crouch down and put your feet together. Place your hands over your ears to minimize hearing damage from thunder. Avoid being closer than 15 feet from other people.
- Do not stand on a hilltop or in an open field. Get off the golf course.
- Avoid water. If you are in a boat, get to shore.
- Get away from tractors and other metal farm equipment.
- Stay away from metal objects, such as wire fences, metal pipes, machinery, motors or power tools.
- Avoid standing in small isolated sheds or other small structures in open areas. You won’t be safe under canopies, small picnic shelters or near trees.
When tornadoes threaten
Will you know what to do if severe weather strikes this summer? When a tornado warning is issued or if threatening weather approaches, remember these rules:
- Seek shelter immediately. Move to an interior room or hallway on the lowest floor and get under a sturdy piece of furniture.
- Stay away from windows. Some people believe that windows should be opened before a tornado approaches to equalize pressure and minimize damage. In fact, opening windows allows damaging winds to enter. Leave the windows alone; instead, immediately go to a safe place.
- Get out of your car. Don’t try to outrun a tornado with your vehicle.
- Mobile homes, even if tied down, offer little protection from tornadoes. Mobile homes should be abandoned for a reinforced shelter.
Remember, tornadoes can develop quickly and may occur during the early stages of rapidly developing thunderstorms. Watch for signs of an approaching tornado during severe weather, such as a dark sky, wall clouds and hail. A tornado watch means tornadoes are possible in your area. Remain alert for approaching storms. A tornado warning means a tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. Move to safety immediately.