What to do to stay safe during lightning storms in Colorado
When venturing outdoors this summer, keep in mind this mantra from weather experts: "When thunder roars, go indoors."
What to know: It's not just a catchy saying; it's life or death. Outside, there's no safe place from lightning, the National Weather Service experts say.
- The only safe spots are inside buildings, where lightning exposure is rare but still possible, or in an enclosed vehicle.
What to do: If you can't make it indoors, experts recommend following these tips to reduce your risk:
- Descend from mountain ridges, peaks and elevated areas.
- Get off of water and away from lakes, ponds and rivers.
- Steer clear of barbed wire fences, power lines and other things that conduct electricity.
What not to do: Contrary to instinct, don't shelter under an isolated tree, and never lie flat on the ground.
- The often-taught "lightning position" could help, but it's not proven.
What's next: If someone is struck by lightning, call 911. Check the victim for a pulse and breathing, and start CPR if necessary. If possible, move the victim to a safe location, because lightning can strike the same place twice.
Of note: Studies show that many people are fatally struck when little or no rain is falling.
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