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PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
600 AM EDT THU JUN 24 2010

...JUNE 20ST-26TH IS LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS DECLARED JUNE 20ST THROUGH JUNE
26TH AS LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK.  THIS WEEK...THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE FORECAST OFFICE IN MELBOURNE WILL BE ISSUING 
INFORMATION STATEMENTS ABOUT LIGHTNING.


TODAY'S TOPIC:  LIGHTNING SAFETY INDOORS

ANY SUBSTANTIAL BUILDING OFFERS THE BEST PROTECTION FROM LIGHTNING.
HOWEVER, IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER WHAT HAPPENS IF THE STRUCTURE
ITSELF IS STRUCK BY LIGHTNING. A SAFE SHELTER IS A BULDING WITH
ELECTRICITY AND/OR PLUMBING, OR A HARD TOPPED, ALL-METAL VEHICLE 
WITH THE WINDOWS CLOSED.  PICNIC SHELTERS, DUGOUTS, BUS STOP 
SHELTERS, AND SMALL BUILDINGS WITHOUT PLUMBING OR ELECTRICITY ARE
NOT SAFE. 

LIGHTNING CAN TRAVEL FOR MILES THROUGH THE ELECTRIC GRID OF YOUR
TOWN OR COUNTY.  IT CAN ENTER A HOME OR BUILDING EITHER THROUGH A
DIRECT STRIKE, THROUGH WIRES OR PIPES THAT EXTEND OUTSIDE THE
STRUCTURE, OR THROUGH THE GROUND.  REGARDLESS OF THE METHOD OF 
ENTRANCE, ONCE INSIDE A STRUCTURE, THE LIGHTNING CAN EASILY TRAVEL 
THROUGH THE ELECTRICAL, PHONE, PLUMBING, AND RADIO/TELEVISION 
RECEPTION SYSTEMS.  LIGHTNING ALSO CAN TRAVEL THROUGH ANY METAL
WIRES OR REBAR IN CONCRETE WALLS AND FLOORS.  

AFTER MOVING INDOORS IN ADVANCE OF A THUNDERSTORM, CERTAIN ACTIONS
SHOULD BE AVOIDED IN ORDER TO FURTHER DECREASE THE RISK OF BEING
STRUCK BY LIGHTNING:

STAY OFF CORDED TELEPHONES!  TALKING ON A CORDED PHONE IS ONE OF THE
LEADING CAUSES OF INDOOR LIGHTNING INJURIES. CELLULAR AND CORDLESS
PHONES ARE SAFE TO USE. 

DONíT TOUCH ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT OR POWER CORDS.  IF YOU NEED TO 
UNPLUG ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT, DO SO BEFORE THE STORM ARRIVES. 

AVIOD PLUMBING FIXTURES.  DO NOT TAKE A SHOWER OR BATH, WASH DISHES,
USE HOSES, OR USE A SPA OR HOT TUB.  EXIT POOLS IMMEDIATELY, EVEN 
IF IT IS AN INDOOR POOL.

STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS AND DOORS AND STAY OFF PORCHES.  DO NOT SIT
OR LIE ON CONCRETE FLOORS AND DO NOT LEAN AGAINST CONCRETE WALLS.
WATCHING A STORM FROM THE PERCEIVED SAFETY OF YOUR GARAGE OR CARPORT
WILL LEAVE YOU VULNERABLE TO BEING STRUCK AS WELL. 

IF YOU ARE USING AN ALL METAL VEHICLE AS A SHELTER, ROLL UP THE
WINDOWS.  AVOID TOUCHING THE IGNITION SWICH, RADIO DIAL, OR CB
RADIOS. 

REMEMBER YOU PETS IN A THUNDERSTORM.  DOG HOUSES ARE NOT SAFE 
SHELTERS, AND DOGS THAT ARE CHAINED TO TREES OR TO WIRE RUNNERS CAN
EASILY FALL VICTIM TO A LIGHTNING STRIKE.  BRING PETS INDOORS.

IN ADDITION TO DIRECT STRIKES, LIGHTNING GENERATES ELECTRICAL SURGES
THAT CAN DAMAGE ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT FAR FROM THE ACTUAL STRIKE.
TYPICAL SURGE PROTECTORS WILL NOT PROTECT EQUIPMENT FROM A DIRECT OR
NEARBY LIGHTNING STRIKE.  IF YOU PLAN TO BE AWAY FROM YOUR HOME WHEN
THUNDERSTORMS ARE POSSIBLE, UNPLUG UNNEEDED EQUIPMENT.  

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT LIGHTNING AND LIGHTNING SAFETY...VISIT 
THE LIGHTNING INFORMATION CENTER AT WEBSITE OF THE NATIONAL WEATHER 
SERVICE IN MELBOURNE:  HTTP://WWW.SRH.NOAA.GOV/MLB/?n=lightning

OR VISIT NOAA'S LIGHTNING SAFETY WEBPAGE AT:  
HTTP://WWW.LIGHTNINGSAFETY.NOAA.GOV 

$$ 

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