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NWS Newport/Morehead City, NC
Hazardous Weather Banner  

Lightning Hazards

RISK LEVEL
HAZARD DESCRIPTION
Low
  • Thunderstorms are expected to be isolated in coverage.
  • Atmosphereic conditions support occasional cloud to ground lightning strikes
Moderate
  • Thunderstorms are expected to be scattered in coverage.
  • Atmosphereic conditions support frequent cloud to ground lightning strikes
High
  • Thunderstorms are expected to be numerous in coverage.
  • Atmosphereic conditions support excessive cloud to ground lightning strikes.

General Information

A lightning strike is an electricl current between the cloud and ground. Each spark of lightning can reach over five miles in length, soar to temperatures of approximately 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit, and contain 100 million electrical volts.

All thunderstorms produce lightning and are dangerous.

Lightning kills an average of 54 people each year in the United States!

If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to be struck by lightning!

For additional information visit:

www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov
Lightning Safety Tips:
  • Postpone outdoor activities if thunderstorms are imminent. This is your best way to avoid being caught in a dangerous situation.
  • You are in danger from lightning if you can hear thunder. Lightning often strikes as far as 10 miles away from any rainfall and even under blue skies. Do not wait until the last minute to take shelter.
  • Move to a sturday building or car. Do not take shelter in small sheds, under isolated trees, or in covertible automobiles. Stay away from tall objects such as towers, fences, telephone poles, and poer lines.
  • If lightning is occurring and a sturdy shelter is not available, get inside a hard top automobile, and keep the windows up. Avoid touching any metal.
  • Utility lines and metal pipes can conduct electricity. Unplug appliances not necessary for obtaining weather information. Avoid using the telephone or any electrical applicanes. Use phones only in an emergency.
  • If outdoors, and no shelter is available, find a low spot away from trees, fences, and poles. Make sure the place you pick is not subject to flooding.
  • If you are in the woods, take shelter under the shorter trees.
  • If you feel your skin tingle, or your hair stand on end, squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet. Place your hand over your ears and your head between your knees. Make yourself the smallest target possible and minimize your contact with the ground. DO NOT lie down.
  • If you are boating or swimming, get to land and find shelter immediately!

This Outlook is an Experimental Product for Planning purposes Only!!!

The local lightning hazard graphics are valid for roughly a 24 hour period from the time of issuance (between 4 AM and 6 AM) until 8 AM the following morning. The highest expected risk possible for the duration of the graphic will be depicted. Only one of the listed criteria needs to be met fo inclusion in a higher risk category

Updates will be posted for significant forecast changes and as time permits.

The outlook graphics are an effort to improve the interpretation of our outlooks and statements. This product is provided for emergency managers, law enforcement, schools, local media, businesses, and the public. Use the graphical hazardous weather outlook to factor the threat of hazardous weather into your daily plans.


DISCLAIMER: This is an experimental service designed to supplement pre-existing, official means of communication. Timeliness and reliability of products obtained from the Internet are not guaranteed.

Click here for a detailed product description.
Click here to complete a customer feedback survey for this experimental product.
Send e-mail with your comments and suggestions to John Cole.
This project is being developed in an effort to achieve goals set forth in the National Weather Service's Strategic Plan.

Updated 7/13/2004