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000 NOUS41 KBOX 231447 PNSBOX CTZ002>004-MAZ002>024-026-RIZ001>008-231900- Public Information Statement National Weather Service Taunton MA 1047 AM EDT Fri Jun 23 2017 ...LIGHTNING SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK CONTINUES - SUMMER MONTHS HAVE THE MOST LIGHTNING DEATHS... The following information is from a study completed by John Jensenius from the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine. June, July, and August are the peak months for lightning activity across the United States and the peak months for outdoor summer activities. As a result, during the period from 2006 to 2016, more than 70 percent of the lightning deaths occurred during these three months, with Saturdays and Sundays having slightly more deaths than other days of the week. From 2006 through 2016, 352 people were struck and killed by lightning in the United States. Almost two thirds of the deaths occurred to people who had been enjoying outdoor leisure activities. The common belief that golfers are responsible for the greatest number of lightning deaths was shown to be a myth. During this 11-year period, fishermen accounted for more than three times as many fatalities as golfers, while beach activities and camping accounted for at least twice as many deaths as golf. From 2006 to 2016, there were a total of 33 fishing deaths, 20 beach deaths, 18 camping deaths, and 16 boating deaths. Of the sports activities, soccer saw the greatest number of deaths with 12, as compared to golf with 9. Around the home, yard work (including mowing the lawn) accounted for 14 fatalities. For work-related activities, ranching/farming topped the list with 17 deaths. In 2017 so far, there has been only 1 fatality. On May 17, 2017, a 37 year old Colorado woman was struck and killed by lightning while she was riding a horse in an open field near a tree. Based on media reports of the fatal incidents, many victims are often headed to safety at the time of the fatal strike or were just steps away from safety. Continued efforts are needed to convince people to get inside a safe place before the lightning threat becomes significant. For many activities, situational awareness and proper planning are essential to safety. In many cases, you can prevent being struck by following basic lightning safety rules. If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to be struck. The only safe place is inside a sturdy building. Stay away from trees, fences, and hilltops. If there is no building, then try to get inside a hard-topped automobile, but not an unprotected motorcycle. If on the water, get to shore when billowing clouds are seen in the distance, the storms can arrive quickly. Remember these rules: When thunder roars, go indoors. If you can hear it, fear it. If you can see it, flee it. For additional information about lightning or lightning safety, visit the NOAA lightning safety awareness Web site at http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov $$ For the latest updates...please visit our webpage at www.weather.gov/boston You can follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NWSBoston You can follow us on Twitter at @NWSBoston

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