American Red Cross
This week celebrates the annual Kids Weather Survival Week from February 1-7th. This is a great opportunity for Floridians, especially children, to learn about the various weather hazards that we face here in Florida. Its is also a great way for all of us to learn how we can prepare for these natural events.
Each day of this week, the Florida Division of Emergency Management will highlight various weather hazards that impact Florida each year.
Today, we will be focusing in lightning! Did you know that lightning is among the top weather-related killers in the U.S.? Lightning strikes the ground about 25 million times each year and causes more injuries/deaths than tornadoes!
Did you know that a lightning strike to the ground or water can travel more than 30 feet in all directions and has been know to strike as much as 10 miles away? It would be a good idea then to avoid outdoor activities when a thunderstorm approaches! Also, its a good idea to follow the “30-30 Rule” that is promoted by the National Weather Service and the Florida Division of Emergency Management.
So, what is the “30-30 Rule“?The 30-30 Rule states that “when you see lightning, count the time it takes until you hear thunder. If this time is less than 30 seconds, go immediately to a safer place. Wait 30 minutes or more after hearing the last clap of thunder before leaving your shelter.”
Remember to be alert to changes in sky conditions and it is best to seek shelter as soon as you hear thunder or see lightning! For more information on lightning hazards and what you can do to protect yourself, visit www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov and www.floridadisaster.org/kids !