Natural Disaster Preparedness - Thunderstorms
Being prepared for thunderstorms is essential to ensure your safety and minimize the risks associated with lightning, heavy rain, strong winds, and other hazards that can accompany these events. Here’s how to prepare for thunderstorms:
Monitor weather forecasts and stay updated on thunderstorm warnings from reliable sources such as the National Weather Service or local meteorological agencies.
Utilize weather apps, emergency alerts, and NOAA Weather Radio to receive timely information.
Create an Emergency Plan:
Develop a family emergency plan that includes communication methods, designated meeting points, and steps to take during thunderstorms.
If a thunderstorm is approaching, stay indoors and away from windows, doors, and exterior walls.
Unplug electronic devices and appliances to protect them from power surges caused by lightning.
Seek shelter indoors if you’re outside and a thunderstorm is imminent.
If there’s no indoor shelter available, avoid tall objects, open fields, isolated trees, and bodies of water, which can attract lightning.
Stay Away from Water:
Avoid swimming or boating during thunderstorms. Water can conduct electricity, increasing the risk of being struck by lightning.
Prepare an emergency kit with essentials like water, non-perishable food, a flashlight, batteries, a first aid kit, medications, and important documents.
Even during a thunderstorm, staying hydrated is important. Have enough water available for everyone in your household.
Stay Indoors After the Storm Passes:
Wait at least 30 minutes after the last thunderclap before going back outside. Lightning can strike up to 10 miles away from a storm.
Protect Electronic Devices:
Use surge protectors to safeguard electronic devices from power surges during lightning storms.
Keep your pets indoors during thunderstorms, as they can become anxious or frightened by the loud noises.
Know First Aid:
Learn basic first aid and CPR techniques in case of injuries during thunderstorms.
Secure Outdoor Items:
Secure or bring indoors any outdoor items that could become projectiles in strong winds.
If you’re indoors during a thunderstorm, avoid using plumbing and electrical appliances, as they can conduct electricity. Stay calm and wait for the storm to pass.
Seek Medical Attention:
If someone is struck by lightning, seek medical attention immediately. Lightning strikes can cause serious injuries and require medical evaluation.
Stay Informed After the Storm:
Keep informed about any post-storm hazards, such as flooding or fallen power lines.
By taking these precautions and being prepared, you can stay safe and reduce the risks associated with thunderstorms and their associated hazards.