Summer is here, but as spring fades, the common occurrence of thunderstorms continues. This week, severe thunderstorms are expected to hit the northern and central Plains and southeast US, bringing hazards such as torrential rain, flooding, tornadoes, high winds, and hail. Additionally, all thunderstorms produce lightning, another hazardous event that can cause power outages and wildfires.

On Monday, as these storms started to roll in, one boy died and two others were injured by a lightning strike in West Virginia. The boys were fishing at a pond when lightning struck a tree near where they were standing. The death marks the sixth caused by a lightning strike in the US this year.

Lightning is one of the top three storm-related killers in the US. As the latest storms move through and the summer months go on, it is important to know what you can do to stay as safe as possible when lightning strikes. Remember the following guidelines to prepare for lightning during a thunderstorm:

  • If thunderstorms are approaching, cancel or postpone outdoor activities.
  • Immediately exit pools, lakes, or other bodies of water and seek shelter indoors.
  • Disconnect appliances, computers, and other important electrical items to prevent damage from power surges.

For more information on how you can properly prepare for lightning, visit the Knowledge Center of your portal or contact your Client Services representative.

2015 Content Intern