Birminghamians are no foreigners to bad weather. We know it will come, the question is just when. What we can do is prepare to be safe.
Storm preparation tips if you’re outside:
- Keep an eye at the sky. Look for darkening skies, flashes of lightning, or increasing winds. Lightning often proceeds rain, so don’t wait for the rain to begin. If you hear the sound of thunder, go to a safe place immediately.
- The best place to go is a sturdy building or a car, but make sure the windows in the car are shut. Avoid sheds, picnic areas, baseball dugouts and bleachers.
- If there is no shelter around you, stay away from trees. Crouch down in the open area, keeping twice as far away from a tree as far as it is tall. Put your feet together and place your hands over your ears to minimize hearing damage from thunder.
- If you’re with a group of people stay about 15 feet from each other.
- Stay out of water. It’s a great conductor of electricity. Swimming, wading, snorkeling and scuba diving are not safe. Also, don’t stand in puddles.
- Avoid metal. Stay away from clotheslines, fences, and drop your backpacks because they often have metal on them.
- If you’re playing an outdoor activity, wait at least 30 minutes after the last observed lightning strike or thunder.
If you’re indoors:
- Avoid water. It’s a great conductor of electricity, so do not take a shower, wash your hands, wash dishes or do laundry.
- Do not use a corded telephone. Lightning may strike exterior phone lines.
- Do not use electric equipment like computers and appliances during a storm.
- Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches. (Courtesy of weatherwizkids.com)
Have an emergency kit:
Making sure there are adequate supplies of water, nonperishable foods, batteries and medicines can make a storm a bit easier to weather.
Storms often blow up out of nowhere, catching people by surprise. In no time, you can be out of power, out of food and out of luck.
That’s why a storm preparedness kit is essential.
Stay current on the weather and stay safe, y’all!