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June 23-29, 2013 is National Lightning Safety Week.

Throughout this week the National Weather Service in Jackson will emphasize lightning safety.

Today we focus on outdoor lightning safety.

Being outdoors is the most dangerous place to be during a lightning storm.
When lightning is seen or thunder is heard...quickly move indoors or into
a hard topped vehicle and remain there until well after the storm has
passed. Although anywhere outdoors involves risk during a lightning storm...
certain locations are more dangerous than others.
 
Dangerous locations include:
  • Near the water...such as when boating...fishing...swimming...or just
    laying on the beach.
  • Areas near tall trees...such as on the golf course...near picnic

    grounds or when hiking. Isolated...tall trees pose the greatest

    danger.

  • High terrain such as hill tops and ridges.
  • High places such as house roofs during construction.
  • Open areas like fields.
A particularly dangerous situation is one in which groups of people
congregate. This includes outdoor sporting events such as baseball...
football...soccer...and tennis as well as community fairs and outdoor
festivals.
 
Everyone should know the outdoor lightning safety rules. A simple lightning
safety rule to remember is “When Thunder Roars...Go Indoors.” If you are
close enough to hear thunder...you are close enough to be struck by
lightning.
 
When lightning approaches...get inside a completely enclosed building.
Carports...open garages...storage sheds...metal sheds...park pavilions...
sports dugouts...and covered patios...or decks are not safe shelters. If no
enclosed building is available...get inside a hard topped...all metal
vehicle.
 
If you cannot reach shelter...avoid being the tallest object in the area. Do
not take shelter under an isolated tree or the tallest trees in the area. If
you are in the woods...seek shelter under the shorter trees. Do not lay on the
ground! Avoid leaning against vehicles. Get off bicycles and motorcycles.

Get out of the water...off the beach and out of small boats and canoes. If
thunderstorms are in the forecast...it is best not to even venture out on the water!
 
Being familiar with outdoor lightning safety rules can save your life or that
of a loved one.
 
Tomorrow we will discuss indoor lightning safety.
 
For additional information...Please contact the National Weather Service Office
in Jackson Mississippi or visit the Lightning Safety Awareness Week web site at
http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/
.

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