How to stay safe when lightning hits

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Here are some lightning safety tips from the National Weather Service.

The safest place to be in a thunderstorm is indoors. Stay inside until 30 minutes passes after the last roar of thunder.

If you’re going to be outside, pay attention to the forecast and track the weather via smartphone apps, weather radio or other devices. Have a plan for what to do and where you’ll go if lightning starts to strike.

Closed-door vehicles, like cars, are safe in lightning. It’s not the rubber tires but the metal roof and sides that protect you. So if lightning strikes your vehicle, avoid touching the frame or doors. Motorcycles, bicycles and cars with fiberglass shells offer no protection from lightning.

Open-ended picnic shelters, tents and dugouts are not safe places in storms. If you are stuck outside, avoid open fields such as tops of hills. Stay away from isolated trees or towers. Stay away from water.

Stay away from corded phones. Cellular phones are safe. Don’t touch electrical equipment such as computers, TVs or cords. Remote controls are safe.

Avoid plumbing. Do not wash your hands, shower or hand-wash dishes.

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