It’s thunderstorm season in our area which means thunder, lightning, strong winds, and heavy rain. The most severe personal and property damage is caused by strong winds, hail and flash flooding. Even small thunderstorms can be dangerous because lightning can strike up to 10 miles away from the center of the storm. Here are a few precautions and thunderstorm safety reminders to protect yourself and your property.
- Before the storm, remove dead trees and branches that could fall.
- Secure outdoor furniture and objects that might blow away or cause damage.
- Install ground fault protectors on outlets near plumbing fixtures and use surge protectors to avoid lightning strike fires.
- Unplug your valuable electronic equipment.
- Don’t forget about Fido! Bring your pets indoors.
- Go indoors or seek shelter in a non-metal building when you hear thunder.
- Get out of the pool (Mom was right).
- Avoid taking a shower or bath and stay away from plumbing. Lightning follows the path of water.
- Avoid contact with electronics, electrical equipment or cords.
- Stay away from windows and doors and stay off porches and patios.
- If you are caught outdoors, avoid natural lightening rods like trees, poles, and isolated structures.
- Avoid contact with metal objects like gardening equipment, golf carts, and bicycles.
- If you are driving, pull over and park. Don’t touch any surface that could conduct electricity inside or outside of the car.
- Never drive through a flooded roadway. Flash flooding is the leading cause of weather-related deaths in the U.S.
- Stay away from downed power lines.
Following these basic precautions and safety tips will help keep you and your property safe during thunderstorm season.