Per the National Weather Service, on average, approximately 400 people are struck by lightning each year. Of those, an average of 55-60 people lose their lives. As of November 27, 2016, there have been 36 deaths caused by lightning. The National Weather Service catalogs each fatality here: NWS Lightning Fatalities. Most lightning related injuries/deaths are preventable. Below are a few tips to keep in mind when lightning approaches.
Outdoor Lightning Safety
– When you hear thunder, move indoors. Lightning can strike from up to 10 miles away.
– Avoid open areas (you do not want to be the tallest object)
– Stay away from trees, telephone poles, and electrical towers (lightning tends to strike the tallest object)
– Get out of the water (pool, beach, etc.)
– Stay awy from metal objects (metal is a great conductor of electricity
– Stay off of hilltops
– Spread out if you are in a large group of people
– Avoid camping during storms. If you must camp, camp in low lying areas
Think you won’t get struck by lightning? Take a look at this video captured from a fellow weatherman who was struck by lightning while watching a storm from his front porch.