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Mark Bello
Mark Bello
Attorney • (877) 377-7848

Lightning Safety: When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors!

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Lightning is one of the most unpredictable and dangerous forces of nature killing approximately 53 people each year; hundreds are permanently injured suffering life-long pain and neurological disabilities. It can strike as far as ten miles away from any rainfall and can travel sideways for up to ten miles. Did you know that when you hear thunder, there is the danger of lightning? By the time you see or hear lightning, the danger is already present.

While lightning can occur anytime, summer is the peak season. The National Weather Service (NWS) offers these facts and tips to keep you and your family safe during a lightning storm.

Indoor Safety Tips

  • Stay off corded phones, computers, and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity or plumbing.
  • Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths, and faucets. That means avoid washing your hands, bathing, doing laundry, or washing dishes.
  • Stay away from porches, windows, and doors.
  • Never lie on concrete floors or lean against concrete walls.
  • If your home is struck by lightning immediately check every room in your house for electrical fires, including the attic.

Outdoor Safety Tips

  • No outdoor area is safe when you hear thunder. Seek shelter immediately.
  • If you hear thunder, find a safe indoor shelter – a home, large building, or a hard-topped vehicle.
  • Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes, and other bodies of water. Don't stand in or near puddles of water.
  • Wait at least 30 minutes after the last thunder before leaving your shelter.
  • Stay away from windows and doors.
  • If caught outdoors, seek the lowest point. Avoid open areas, elevated areas, tall trees, and rock enclosures.
  • Stay away from anything metal – electrical equipment, poles, fences, and wiring.
  • Do not lie flat on the ground

If a person is struck by lightning, call 9-1-1 and get medical care immediately. Victims struck by lightning carry no electrical charge; attend to them immediately. Check their breathing, heartbeat and pulse. CPR may be needed.

Awareness and prevention are important to safety. Check the forecast and monitor the weather before making or continuing with your outdoor plans. If a thunderstorm is predicted, postpone activities. When outdoors, know where you will go when you hear the roar.

Lightning Safety Awareness Week is being held June 23 – 29, 2013.

Mark Bello has thirty-six years experience as a trial lawyer and fourteen years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by a plaintiff involved in pending, personal injury, litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Member of Public Justice, Public Citizen, the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.