When you think of natural disasters that can pose a threat to your life, you probably think of hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc. But regular old thunderstorms can also be quite dangerous.
When a dangerous thunderstorm is headed towards your area, it will most likely be announced in your local weather alert system. You’ll want to get yourself indoors, to safety, and follow these basic steps for sheltering indoors.
1. Keep a weather app on your phone
While these days, very severe weather warnings will often be broadcasted on all mobile devices in a given area, you still want to make sure you’ve got a good weather app on your phone, and keep an eye out for upcoming weather alerts. Having a day’s notice as opposed to getting an alert as the weather moves in could make all the difference.
2. Secure yourself indoors
This might seem like a no-brainer, but as the weather picks up, make sure you are securely inside, rather than outside trying to put your lawn chairs away before the storm hits. Don’t worry about anything less valuable than your life, get inside and shut the windows and doors securely.
3. Stay away from windows
Intense thunderstorms are certainly an amazing sight, but resist the urge to watch and shelter away from windows and doors. You never know when flying debris might break a window and this has the potential to seriously injure you.
4. Alternative power
For thunderstorms, like many major weather events, you’ll want to make sure you’ve got some alternative power for light and heat. Get yourself some flashlights, lanterns, and portable heaters (like a kerosene heater), as well as a battery-operated radio for weather alerts.
5. Avoid electronics or shut off power
Because of lightning, hard-wired electronics can potentially shock you if you use them during a severe thunderstorm. Avoid anything plugged into an electrical socket, or turn off the power in your home altogether.