A new study put out for National Lightning Safety Awareness Week finds that campers and fishermen should take lightning seriously, reports National Geographic. John Jensenius of the National Weather Service says that not only is summer the peak season for lightning but it also is the time when people are most often outdoors enjoying leisure activities. The combination of these two factors can be deadly, he warns.
The study reveals that 64 percent of lightning fatalities in the country reported since 2006 occurred when people were engaged in leisure activities. Of these, fishing topped the list, followed by camping. Another finding of the study was that 82 percent of lightning victims reported between 2006 and 2012 were male.
Jensenius also provided a sobering statistic that a person has a 10 percent chance of dying after being struck by lightning. He believes the biggest risk stems from not recognizing the threat. People should listen to the forecast, and if a thunderstorm arises they should quickly get to a safe place like a four-walled building or a hardtop metal vehicle, he advises. “If you can hear thunder you can be struck.”
This weather expert gives the following recommendations that could save your life.
- When you hear thunder, go indoors. A tent will not protect you from lightning.
- Once inside, stay away from anything that can conduct electricity, such as sinks, showers and corded phones, as well as wires, windows and doors.
- After the thunder stops, wait 30 minutes before going outside.
- If you feel a tingling sensation or you hair starts sticking up, it means you are in imminent danger of being struck, so seek cover immediately.
Check our Access Camping website frequently for camping tips.