Staying safe from lightning strikes

"People need to remember that if you hear thunder you’re close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning. It occurs with every thunderstorm so we need to take that threat more seriously than we otherwise would." said Todd Heitkamp, NWS Sioux Falls Meteorologist in Charge.

Lightning can happen in Siouxland all year but is most common during the spring and summer months.

This also happens to be when people are outside the most.

The most important thing you can do to stay safe is get indoors.

"A building of some sort or a hard-topped vehicle are some of the best places that they can go." said Heitkamp.

You may find yourself stuck outside as a thunderstorm rolls in though.

When you hear thunder you should take action as soon as possible.

In this situation you should avoid seeking shelter under a tree.

According to the National Weather Service this is one of the highest causes of death from lightning.

"Lightning often hits the tallest object so if you find yourself with no other options you can crouch down low to the ground and cover your head. But that should be done as an absolute last resort."

Another myth?

Lightning can and often does strike the same spot twice.

If your hair begins to stand up lightning is about to strike and you need to immediately move from the area.

After waiting 30 minutes from the last thunder, you are safe to resume enjoying your outdoor activities.

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