How to Stay Safe This Summer
WATKINS GLEN, NY (WENY) -- Two people are recovering after a lightning strike hit a campground in Watkins Glen Friday evening, as storms moved across the area. Being weather aware during the summer months could not only save your life, but others as well.
Over the past 20 years the United States averages around 50 lightning fatalities per year. However, in 2017 lightning deaths across the nation were at an all time low with only 16 deaths.
We spoke with a meteorologist from the National Weather Service office of Binghamton on how to stay safe this season.
"You definitely want to make sure you check the forecast before you head outdoors for the day. That's definitely important. Also, we have N.O.A.A. weather radio, that's another way to receive warning or alerts of the weather. And of course your cell phone, if you have a cell phone connection you will be able to receive warnings on there as well," says Bryan Greenblatt, meteorologist at NWS Binghamton.
So far this year, there have been 7 fatalities caused by lightning in the US. Also, lightning can strike as much as 10 miles away from a thunderstorm.
Greenblatt says, "Our main motto here is when Thunder Roars go Indoors, definitely the first thing you want to if your outside is seek shelter. You definitely want to avoid open fields, and stay away from water and metal objects such as fences or poles."
If shelter is not an option and you happen to be in the wood, seek shelter under a lower group of trees as lightning is attracted to tall objects.
If you happen to have outdoor plans for the day, please check the weather forecast before you head out. The forecast for any location can be found at: www.weather.gov.
For more safety tips about lightning and how to stay safe click here.