The Dangers of Lightning – What You Need to Know

By Robert D. Liken CPC, CTS, President

June 3, 2016


Senior Care in Mt. Lebanon PA

During the spring and summer months, thunderstorms are a natural danger that seniors and their caregivers need to be mindful of.  Even though not every thunderstorm is classified as “severe,” Senior-Care-in-Mt.-Lebanon-PAevery thunderstorm creates lightning, a dangerous weather phenomenon.  Every year, lightening causes death, injury, and property damage across the United States.  Lightening may be commonplace, but it is far from harmless.  To keep your senior loved one safe from the dangers of lightning during this spring and summer season, keep in mind these simple safety tips:
Seek Shelter
When a storm is on its way, encourage your loved one to get inside.  Gardening and other outdoor chores can wait until the storm has passed.  The safest place a person can be during a storm is indoors.  Of all of the deaths and injuries that are caused by lightning, many of them occur in outdoors in open fields, golf courses, and open parks.  In addition, many happen to people who are under trees.  If your loved one is away from home when a storm hits suddenly, encourage them to get to the nearest shelter and never seek shelter under a tree.  Even being in a car is safer than being outside.
Avoid Things That Can Conduct Electricity
Metal can conduct electricity and put your loved one at risk for electric shock during a thunderstorm, even if they are inside.  If lightning strikes the ground nearby, the electricity can travel through metal pipes and plumbing which can cause shock and/or injury.  This is why it is a good idea to avoid taking a shower or bath or washing dishes during a storm.  In addition, lightning can also travel through wires and phone lines so it is a great idea to stay off of the landline phone and avoid touching electronics such as computers.  If your loved one happens to be in a car during a thunderstorm, advise them to not touch anything metal in the car.
Avoid Windows
Windows and doors can have leaks in them that can allow lightning to enter.  During a thunderstorm, ensure that your loved one remains inside and away from doors and windows.  Being on a porch, even if it is covered, does not count as being inside!  Being inside the house is the safest.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Senior Care in Mt. Lebanon, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Liken Home Care.  Call (412) 693-6820 or (855) 856-0551