6 Warning Signs and the 16 Deadliest Places for Lightning Strikes

By Cat Rooney, Epoch Times
August 14, 2013 Updated: August 23, 2013

On average lightning kills 93 people and injures 257 in America each year, according to a study by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Among the injured, 74 percent develop serious health problems and permanent disabilities. 

Most lightning deaths occur from May to September when there are more thunderstorms and people outside golfing, swimming, fishing, hiking, and attending outdoor events. 

Outdoor recreation leads to 73 percent of lightning deaths, and 25 percent of lightning deaths happen when people are working at outdoor jobs, according to the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control. 

The deadliest day for lightning strikes is July 4, according to National Geographic News. 

Stay safe by heeding warning signs and getting out of the storm and away from places known to attract lightning. 

Warning Signs:

There are six warning signs that you are in a potentially deadly lightning zone, according to NOAA and National Geographic News:

1. Hair standing on end
2. Seeing lightning
3. Hearing thunder, which means lightning is 10 or fewer miles away.
4. Being within 5 to 10 miles of a storm 
5. A storm is overhead and you are in one of the deadly places listed below
6. The area is under a severe weather warning

10 Deadliest Outside Places for Lightning Strikes:

NOAA warns that when a storm is approaching and 30 minutes after it has passed get away from these 10 places to minimize the chances of a deadly lightning strike: 

1. High places
2. Water, including lakes, ponds, and ditches
3. Isolated trees
4. Unprotected gazebos, pavilions, rain or picnic shelters
5. Baseball dugouts
6. Communications towers
7. Near flagpole, light poles, metal or wood bleachers, and metal fences
8. Convertibles
9. Golf carts
10. Open fields

6 Deadliest Inside Places for Lightning Strikes:

Being out of the elements inside a garage or house does not mean a person is safe from lightning strikes. Stay away from appliances and water during an electrical storm. According to NOAA, once lightning enters a home it can travel along these avenues to kill:

1. Corded phones
2. Electrical equipment or cords such as to a computer, or appliances
3. Plumbing, the bath, shower, washing machine, faucet
4. Windows, doors, porches
5. Concrete, because lightning can travel in metal; rebar and wires inside concrete
6. Radios and televisions

RECOMMENDED