Lightning Maps and Info
When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors!......To Learn More, Click Here.
Current National Lightning Map
GLN Lightning Plot
The image is from the www.uspln.com
Southwestern WASP2 Lightning Maps
Maps courtesy of The Southwestern Weather Network
The Weather ChannelLightning/satellite composite -- Delayed 30 minutes
AccuweatherLightning map -- Delayed 30 minutes
SPC 6 Hr. National Lightning Map
National Probability of Lightning Map
Pacific Northwest Probability of Lightning Map
Information courtesy of ...
United States Precision Lightning Network
National Weather Service
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 sturdy 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 power 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 appliances. 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!
- Watch the sky. Be aware (and wary) of darkening skies, lightning flashes, wind gusts, or rumbles of thunder.
- If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning. Find shelter immediately!
- Find shelter in a building or hard-top vehicle. Keep car windows fully closed and avoid touching metal.
- Avoid partially enclosed areas like porches, patios, gazebos, carports, or picnic shelters, and buildings out in the open like sheds.
- Avoid standing near windows and doors. Stay away from electrical panels, cords, and receptacles, which can spark.
- Avoid metal-reinforced concrete walls or slabs (patios and garage floors), and stay away from metal support posts.
- Don't wear shoes with metal spikes. Don't carry metal objects like backpacks, sporting equipment, fishing poles, or tools.
- Don't lean against vehicles, and don't use bicycles, motorcycles, lawn mowers, tractors, golf carts, and machinery.
- If in a group of people stranded outside, spread out at least 15 feet from each other. Don't huddle together.
- If you are in the woods, take shelter near the shortest trees and away from tall ones. Get well inside the grove of trees, though, rather than near the edge.
- If you are boating or swimming, get to land and find shelter immediately. Get away from the shore too!
- If stranded in a boat and unable to find a harbor, stay in the cabin with the windows closed. Otherwise, squat low near the center of the boat without lying down, and don't touch other people, metal, or water.
- Avoid high places. Go to an open, low-lying place not subject to flooding and away from trees. Stay away from poles or metal objects such as lampposts, fences, bleachers, or clotheslines. Avoid railroad tracks and gates.
- If you feel your hair stand on end, squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet. Minimize the number of contact points with the ground. Put your hands over your ears and your elbows on your knees. Don't lie down-- this will make you a larger target!
- Avoid taking a bath or shower, washing hands, using the bathroom, or running water for any purpose.
- Don't use land-based telephones or wear headsets. Avoid using all phones when outside.
- Turn off all appliances, ESPECIALLY washers, dryers, and TV's. Unplug electronics well before the storm gets close, or not at all.
- People struck by lightning carry no electrical charge and can be handled safely. Call 911, whether they appear to need it or not. Check the victim's breathing and heart rhythm, and administer mouth-to-mouth resuscitation or CPR if necessary.
- Sports coaches, umpires, or coordinators should have hand-held lightning detectors and/or NOAA weather radios, and have an evacuation plan already in place in case lightning approaches suddenly.
- Don't use umbrellas in a storm!
- Wait 30 minutes after the last thunder is heard before venturing outside.
- If you can see it or hear it, lightning can hit you. Find shelter now.
- The primary rule for lightning safety: When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors!
- Lightning is the number two weather killer in the United States (behind floods), killing more than hurricanes and tornadoes combined.
- Lightning kills about 60 people in the U.S. each year and inflicts severe life-long debilitating injuries on at least a 1,000 people a year.
- Every 5 seconds between flash and boom is a mile’s distance from you.
- Under ideal conditions, lightning’s thunder can be heard 12 miles away.
- Lightning is really no wider than a few inches.
- “Bolts from the Blue” – These lightning flashes have been documented to travel more than 25 miles away from the thunderstorm cloud. Clear skies above you are no indication of how dangerous a nearby storm is!
- The air within a lightning strike can reach 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Lightning can heat its path five times hotter than the surface of the sun.
- One ground lightning stroke can generate between 100 million and 1 billion volts of electricity.
- The “30-30 Rule” offers easy to follow lightning safety guidance. When you see lightning, count the time until you hear thunder. If that time is 30 seconds or less, the thunderstorm is close enough to be dangerous. Seek shelter. If you can’t see the lightning, just hearing the thunder is a good back-up rule. Wait at least 30 minutes after the lightning flash before leaving shelter.
- No place outside is safe during a thunderstorm!
- A house, or other fully enclosed building with wiring and plumbing offers your best protection against lightning. Once inside stay off of corded telephones, computers and other electrical appliances and stay away from sinks, showers, indoor pools and other plumbing. Don’t watch lightning from windows or doorways. Inner rooms are safer.
- A car with a metal roof and sides is your second best protection against lightning. As in a house, don’t touch any conducting paths leading outside. It is the metal shell that protects you, not the rubber tires.
- Lightning causes about $5 billion of economic impact in the U.S. each year!
Of all the weather types associated with thunderstorms – hail, tornadoes, floods, etc – lightning is usually the most dangerous. In the United States there are an estimated 25 million cloud to ground lightning flashes each year and each one is a potential threat to life and property. During the past 10 years there has been an annual average of 60 lightning fatalities in the United States.
More Lightning Safety Tips
As thunderstorm season approaches, it is time to educate ourselves on the dangers of lightning.
Lightning Fast Facts
Lightning Safety Facts
What are the odds?
Here are some scary statistics to think about.
The odds of an individual being a lightning casualty (injured) in a year in the U.S. is about 280,000-to-1. If you’re an average person, in an average location, with average outside activities, and average lightning safety behavior. That’s about 3,000-to-one over your lifetime, with about 300-to-one odds of being seriously affected by a family member or friend being a lightning survivor.
The odds of an individual being killed by lightning each year in the U.S. is about 3 million-to-1, if you’re an average person, in an average location, with average outside activities, and average lightning safety behavior. That’s about 35,000-to-one over a life time, and about 3,000-to-one of being seriously affected by a family member or friend being killed by lightning.
Think about that. Three thousand to one odds that you yourself will be injured by lightning over your lifetime. That’s not very good odds at all. The next time you are outside and you see the telltale flash or hear the rumble, keep this in mind and please take appropriate precautions – the odds are against you if you don’t!
- US/CA Boltel Lightning Site
- Vaisala Lightning Explorer
- Intellicast Lightning
- California Lightning Sites
Learning About Lightning
Video courtesy of TornadoVideos.net