Lightning strikes claimed three lives in Telangana (two in Nalgonda and one in Nagarkurnool) on Wednesday. According to the meteorological department, various parts of Telangana are likely to experience thunderstorms on May 15 and May 16.
With such a weather forecast, it is imperative for everyone to know what to do to be safe in a thunderstorm.
Here are ten things you should do to be safe in a thunderstorm
Calculate the distance to lightning: By noting the time between the lightning and thunder, you can calculate how far lightning is from you. If the time between the flash of lightning and the sound of thunder is less than 30 seconds, then it is less than 10 kilometres away.
Get a shelter: When you see lightning, get a substantial shelter immediately. This rules out sheds, rain shelters or standing under trees or any such. Get inside a building at the earliest. If you can’t find shelter, then get inside a car if you can but do not touch any metal in the car.
Stay away from windows: Windows can provide a short path for lightning, so keep them closed and stay away from them.
Do not touch anything electrical: Electrical outlets, landline wires and more can provide a path for lightning, so stay away from them.
Stay inside for at least half hour: There’s a high chance of lightning even if the rain is subsiding, so stay inside for some time.
If you can’t find shelter, then this is what you can do
Stay alert: If you feel a tingling in your skin or your hair is standing up, chances are high that lightning is about to strike you.
Reduce your risk: Move to a lower elevation, stay away from isolated objects like trees, lamp posts, etc. Avoid large open spaces like grounds or fields, where you are the taller than anything around you.
Get out of water: If you are in a water-body or in a swimming pool, get out of it immediately.
Spread your group out: If you are in an open space with a group of people, then spread the group apart to minimize the risk for everyone. Stay at least 30-40 feet from each other.
Crouch down: If lightning is striking near you, crouch down and close your eyes and ears. While this doesn’t guarantee safety, it can minimize the risk.