Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Jackson, MS

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PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE JACKSON MS
555 AM CDT FRI JUN 27 2014

...TODAY IS THE LAST DAY OF LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS DECLARED THE WEEK OF JUNE 22ND
THROUGH 28TH, LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK.  THIS IS THE LAST IN
A SERIES OF FIVE PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENTS TO BE ISSUED BY THE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE OFFICE IN JACKSON, MS CONTAINING INFORMATION
ON LIGHTNING AND LIGHTNING SAFETY.

LIGHTNING SAFETY AROUND THE HOME

ALTHOUGH HOUSES AND OTHER SUBSTANTIAL BUILDING OFFER THE BEST
PROTECTION FROM LIGHTNING, EACH YEAR MANY HOMES ACROSS THE
UNITED STATES ARE STRUCK BY LIGHTNING.  IN FACT, ON AVERAGE, LIGHTNING
CAUSES ABOUT 4400 HOUSE FIRES AND 1800 OTHER STRUCTURAL FIRES EACH YEAR,
SOME OF WHICH ARE DEADLY. ALL TOTALED, LIGHTNING CAUSES NEARLY $1 BILLION
IN DAMAGES EACH YEAR.

THERE ARE THREE MAIN WAYS LIGHTNING ENTERS HOMES AND BUILDINGS:
(1) A DIRECT STRIKE,
(2) THROUGH WIRES OR PIPES THAT EXTEND OUTSIDE THE STRUCTURE, AND
(3) THROUGH THE GROUND.

REGARDLESS OF THE METHOD OF ENTRANCE, ONCE IN A STRUCTURE, THE LIGHTNING
CAN TRAVEL THROUGH THE ELECTRICAL AND PHONE WIRES, THE PLUMBING, AND/OR
RADIO AND TELEVISION RECEPTION SYSTEMS.

INDOOR SAFETY DEPENDS ON AVOIDING CONTACT WITH ITEMS THAT COULD
CONDUCT LIGHTNING WITHIN THE HOME.  HERE ARE SOME INDOOR SAFETY
TIPS TO FOLLOW WHEN A THUNDERSTORM IS IN THE AREA.


  1. DON`T TOUCH ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT OR CORDS.  IF YOU PLAN TO
     UNPLUG ANY ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT, DO SO WELL BEFORE THE
     STORM ARRIVES.
  2. STAY OFF CORDED PHONES.
  3. AVOID CONTACT WITH PLUMBING.  DO NOT WASH YOUR HANDS, TAKE A
     SHOWER, WASH DISHES, OR DO LAUNDRY.
  4. STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS AND DOORS, AND STAY OFF PORCHES. MANY
     PEOPLE LIKE TO WATCH THUNDERSTORMS FROM THEIR PORCH OR BACK
     DECK. THIS IS VERY DANGEROUS BEING OUTSIDE WHEN A THUNDERSTORM
     IS IN THE AREA.


IN CASE YOUR HOME IS STRUCK BY LIGHTNING:

  * EVACUATE YOUR HOME IMMEDIATELY IF YOU SMELL SMOKE AND CALL
    911.
  * CALL YOUR LOCAL FIRE DEPARTMENT AND, IF POSSIBLE, HAVE THEM
    CHECK FOR HOT SPOTS IN YOUR WALLS WITH THERMAL IMAGING EQUIPMENT.
  * MAKE SURE ALL SMOKE DETECTORS ARE POWERED AND OPERATING PROPERLY.
  * IF NEEDED, HAVE A LICENSED ELECTRICIAN CHECK THE WIRING IN YOUR
    HOME.

LIGHTNING QUESTION OF THE DAY:  WHAT ARE LIGHTNING RODS AND HOW DO THEY WORK?

LIGHTNING RODS PROTECT A HOME FROM A DIRECT LIGHTNING STRIKE, BUT THEY DO NOT
PREVENT A HOME FROM BEING STRUCK.  THEY ARE DESIGNED TO INTERCEPT LIGHTNING,
TO PROVIDE A CONDUCTIVE PATH FOR THE HARMFUL ELECTRICAL DISCHARGE TO FOLLOW,
AND TO DISPERSE THE ENERGY SAFELY INTO THE GROUND. WHILE LIGHTNING RODS HELP
PROTECT A STRUCTURE FROM A DIRECT LIGHTNING STRIKE, A COMPLETE LIGHTNING
PROTECTION SYSTEM IS NEEDED TO HELP PREVENT HARMFUL ELECTRICAL SURGES AND
POSSIBLE FIRES CAUSED BY LIGHTNING ENTERING A STRUCTURE VIA WIRES AND PIPES.
LIGHTNING PROTECTION SYSTEMS SHOULD BE PURCHASED FROM AND INSTALLED BY A
CERTIFIED LIGHTNING PROTECTION SPECIALIST.


HERE`S A LIST OF TOPICS THAT WERE COVERED EARLIER THIS WEEK.

MONDAY: AN INTRODUCTION TO LIGHTNING AND LIGHTNING SAFETY
TUESDAY: LIGHTNING`S MOST DEADLY ACTIVITIES
WEDNESDAY: LIGHTNING SAFETY AND SPORTS ACTIVITIES
THURSDAY: LIGHTNING SAFETY AT WORK

WE HOPE YOU HAVE LEARNED SOME IMPORTANT TIPS ABOUT LIGHTNING AND
LIGHTNING SAFETY THIS WEEK AND WILL SHARE THIS INFORMATION WITH
FAMILY AND FRIENDS. WHILE LIGHTNING CAN AND DOES STRIKE YEAR
ROUND...MANY LIGHTNING FATALITIES OCCUR IN THE SUMMER MONTHS. UNLIKE
HURRICANES AND TORNADOES...THERE IS NO WARNING AS TO WHERE OR WHEN
LIGHTNING WILL STRIKE. SO REMEMBER...WHEN THUNDER ROARS, GO INDOORS!

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT LIGHTNING OR LIGHTNING SAFETY, VISIT
NOAA`S LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEB SITE AT:

     HTTP://WWW.LIGHTNINGSAFETY.NOAA.GOV

$$







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