Lightning Safety Awareness Week works to bring awareness, lower death rate due to strikes


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Lightning may be fascinating but it can also be extremely deadly.

To keep people safe, this week starts National Lightning Safety Awareness Week. The event kicked off in 2001 to bring attention to the underrated killer and to educate and offer the best safety tips during a thunderstorm.

When a storm is on the way, the safest place to be is indoors. When National Lightning Safety Awareness Week started, the goal was to reduce the number of lightning-related deaths. That goal currently has been met, dropping the rate from about 55% to less than 30%.

As of June 20, there have been two lightning-related deaths. Hopefully, by increasing awareness, it will keep that number down.

The two biggest issues is people are waiting too long to get indoors and then going back outdoors too soon during a storm. It’s best to wait 30 minutes after the last strike to go back out. Also, keep in mind that it is hard to find a safe place outdoors during a thunderstorm. A metal-topped vehicle is fine if you can’t find shelter, but make sure you do not get out until after the storm has passed.

If you keep your dogs outside, it’s important to bring them inside. Outdoor dog houses do not offer enough protection for them.

Remember this phrase: When thunder roars, go indoors. If you need help tracking current weather conditions, you can download our free StormTeam 9 weather app.

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