411 Pain Presents: The Truth About Lightning And Thunder - Path 411 Pain

411 Pain Presents: The Truth About Lightning And Thunder

Posted on : April 3, 2013

411 Pain Presents: The Truth About Lightning And Thunder

Thunder and lightning are glorious to behold.
But they can be dangerous. Though your chances of being struck by lightning are only 1 in 600,000, the actual number of people struck per year in the US is nearly 400, with an average of 60 not surviving a direct strike. Although the risk of a lightning strike fatality is low, more people are killed by lightning in the US than by hurricanes and tornadoes combined!

Florida, specifically the Tampa Bay area, is known as the lightning capital of the United States. In fact, every square mile in Central Florida is hit by lightning 40 times per year! (The Empire State Building in New York City is struck about 23 times per year)
Thunderstorms love warm humid conditions! So it is not surprising that Florida experiences thunderstorms about 100 days per year. (as opposed to California with only 5) Not surprisingly, the highest number of deaths due to lightning are in Florida, with 94% of them occurring between late May and late September.

The sound of thunder is caused by the contracting and expanding of the air around a lightning bolt.
A lightning bolt is about 50,000 degrees – 5 times hotter than the sun! The average flash could light a 100 watt bulb for over 3 months!

You will see lightning before you hear thunder because light travels faster than sound.
To know how far away lightning is from you, count how many seconds are between the flash of lightning you see and the thunder you hear. Every 5 seconds equals 1 mile.

411 Pain wants to make sure that YOU know what to do to stay SAFE in a thunderstorm.

When thunder roars, go indoors!
The worst place to be during thunder and lightning is outside! Being in a car is safer than being out in the open -but make sure to avoid touching the metal in your car!
Avoid being next to trees as thousands of trees are struck by lightning EACH DAY. They are tall and a perfect target, passing the electric current from the sky to the ground. If you are touching the ground near them, the current will pass through you too! If you are in a forest however, seek shelter under a thick growth of small trees. If there are no trees around then YOU might very well be the tallest thing around! Avoid beaches or any open area where you are an easy target. You especially do not want to be on, in or near water! If you are outdoors and feel your hair stand on end, that means that lightning is about to strike!
411 Pain urges you to squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet.
Put your hands over your ears and your head between your knees.
You want to be the smallest target possible.
If you are indoors, stay away from windows, doors, balconies and porches.
Do not touch electrical appliances including corded telephones. (cellphones and cordless phones are ok)
Do not shower or bathe – avoid all plumbing fixtures as they conduct electric current as well.

Thunderstorms typically last about a half hour.
When the storm is over, proceed outside with caution in case of flooding. Do not attempt to drive though large puddles – there may be downed power-lines.
You may also not be able to tell how deep the water is. Remember – turn around – don’t drown!

411 Pain ,the leader in road in road safety awareness, reminds you to NEVER drink and drive, NEVER text and drive and ALWAYS wear your seat-belt.

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