You probably think it won’t happen to you but weather research indicates over 500 people are struck by lightning each year. When you’re outside and a storm comes up, as soon as you hear thunder, there’s an immediate lightning danger. Protect yourself by knowing the myths from the facts.
Myth: If you’re caught outside, you should lie flat on the ground.
Fact: Lying flat increases your chances of being affected by dangerous
ground current. Keep moving towards a safe shelter (not the nearest tree or tower). If you absolutely can’t get to shelter, make yourself into a ball.
Myth: Lightning never strikes the same place twice.
Fact: Lightning can strike the same place repeatedly. The Empire State
Building is hit nearly 100 times a year.
Myth: If you touch a lightning victim, you’ll be electrocuted.
Fact: Lightning victims are safe to touch. Call 911 and do not delay CPR.
Myth: Rubber tires protect you from lightning.
Fact: When lightning strikes a car, it travels through the metal frame into the
ground. Most cars are safe, but convertibles, motorcycles and
Myth: You are completely safe from lightning if you are in a house.
Fact: You are safe in a house, but anything that conducts electricity isn’t,
including water. To help protect your TV, computer and appliances,
invest in individual surge protectors and consider hiring an
electrician to install one on your home’s service panel. Know that it
doesn’t have to be a direct hit to do damage; a lightning bolt can fry a
home’s electric lines indirectly from as far as a mile away as the
electrical surge travels through pipes, wires, water, trees, buildings
and the ground.