Severe thunderstorms can have devastating effects on our health and well-being, property, and community. Severe thunderstorm wind can gust to more than 150 km/h, overturning trailers, damaging roofs, and toppling trees and power lines. The danger of serious injury from hail is not hard to imagine when you consider that a good-sized hailstone may fall at speeds near 160 km/h.
The best defence against thunderstorms is to stay inside a substantial building. Thunderstorms do not usually last for a long time and will generally pass in less than an hour. When thunderstorms are expected, be sure to pick up loose objects around your home or business. Small items can become deadly in strong wind, and flying debris can cause serious damage to other property.
- Close all windows and doors. Secure loose objects outside so they don’t get blown around.
- Disconnect electrical appliances, such as radios, TVs, computers, etc. as they can conduct electricity.
- Get to the basement or main level of your house if it’s a severe storm.
- If you’re in a car, pull over to the side of the road, but stay in the car.
- Find a low-lying area away from trees and hydro poles. Crouch on the balls of your feet with your hands and head on your knees. This is called the 'leap-frog' position.
- Don’t use electrical equipment, any faucets or the phone.
- Don’t go near windows and doors.
- Don’t stand under hydro poles or tall trees, since lightning is attracted to tall objects.
- Don't stay near or touch anything that may conduct electricity such as fishing rods, golf clubs, tractors, water, etc.
- Don't go outside unless it's absolutely necessary. Stay indoors.