Lightning Safety Tips from the First Alert Experts - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Lightning Safety Tips from the First Alert Experts


A Georgia man is recovering after getting struck by lightning over the weekend. The intensity of it literally blew him right out of his shoes.

This is afternoon thunderstorm season, and it's important to know lightening safety information for you and your family.

There's no better place for that than the experts right here in our WTOC First Alert Weather Team.

Lightning doesn't always mean severe weather, but if you don't take the appropriate safety precautions, it could mean severe consequences.

Monday, like the rest of the week, carries a chance of those intense afternoon thunderstorms, and with that, most definitely comes lightning.

WTOC's First Alert Meteorologists, like Dave Turley, keep you informed of the potential for bad weather, including the danger of lightning in the area. However, if you find yourself caught outside in a thunderstorm our experts say:

First, get inside if possible, and if you can't, get as low to the ground as possible and away from tall conductors of electricity, like trees and flagpoles.

Also, you can tell how far away the lightning is by using this counting rule: if you see lightning, start counting how long until you hear thunder. Every five seconds equals a mile.

"The idea is if you hear the thunder, the lightning is close and you hear the thunder you need to get inside because the lightning is close enough to be affecting you," said Turley.

You are the safest inside, but there are still some risks. Stay away from windows and don't use electrical appliances because that's one way the lightning can travel inside your home. 

Lastly, don't use the water, like for showers or dishes.

"Water is a very good conductor of electricity, so if your house gets struck by lightning that electricity can actually come through that water and affect you," said Turley.

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