Stay safe during a thunderstorm with these tips

With the arrival of warm weather, most of us flock outdoors to soak up the sunshine and stretch our legs. But while the weather may feel perfect now, there’s a chance a thunderstorm can pop up on the radar and threaten to shut down the summer fun.

It’s essential to take lightning seriously — don’t blow it off to squeeze in another round of golf. We broke down exactly what you should do if you see a thunderstorm approaching:

Tips for staying safe during a thunderstorm.

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Essential Thunderstorm Safety Tips

  • If a storm hits, take shelter inside a safe building or vehicle with both a roof and sides.
  • Once you’re inside, avoid electrical equipment, corded phones (cell phones and cordless phones are safe), plumbing, windows, and doors.
  • Wait 30 minutes after that last rumble of thunder to head back outside.
  • If you can’t find shelter, avoid open, elevated areas. Find lower ground.
  • Solitary trees and objects can attract lighting — so steer clear.
  • Remember, water and metals are conductors of electricity.
  • Don’t stand or huddle in groups. It’s possible for electric currents to pass between people.

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Emergencies can happen in the blink of an eye or the beat of the heart. And when they do, seconds matter. UPMC’s emergency and trauma care services are ready to provide world-class care, no matter how serious your emergency. All our emergency departments have a full-time staff of emergency specialists at the ready 24 hours a day. We use advanced technology to diagnose and treat your condition and coordinate with your doctor to provide the best care possible. We also have specialized trauma care, including Level 1 trauma centers at UPMC Presbyterian and UPMC Mercy, a Level 1 pediatric trauma center at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, a Level 2 trauma center at UPMC Hamot, and a trauma center at UPMC Altoona.