Lethal lightning: what you need to know to stay safe - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Lethal lightning: what you need to know to stay safe

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A lightning strike at a New Hampshire Boy Scouts camp has injured almost two dozen scouts.

Scouts spokesman Greg Osborn said no one was directly hit by the lightning Monday at the Griswold Scout Reservation.He said some of the 23 scouts and three adults who were injured complained of tingling and burning sensations. All were treated by camp nurses before they were taken to the hospital as a precaution.

With thousands of boy scouts expected to invade southern West Virginia for the jamboree next month, 59News wanted to find out exactly what you should do in the event of a lightning storm.

Lightning is one of the most obvious signs of severe weather and while it can be amazing to watch, it also can be lethal.  Experts said once you see the signs of a severe storm, take cover!

"There are those tell tale signs that a storm is brewing that it is coming our way, it generally does not happen in a split second. So you do have ample time if you are aware and cognizant of your activities, to make that decision that hey we need to storm these outdoor activities for now and get everyone inside," Kevin Taylor, Director of Emergency Services said.

59News found a tree that was struck by lightening in Raleigh County.  The tree's bark was roasted until it turned black and the leaves on the tree were crispy and brown.  Experts commented on this tree and said imagine what this could do to a person!

59News fact checked some myths and found out boating, swimming, golfing and camping are some of the most dangerous activities a person can be doing while it is lightning outside.

59News choose one of these locations to put to the test and find out what they have planned in case of a thunderstorm.

Children attending at the New River Park in Beckley were given instructions to listen for the lifeguard.  The young swimmers listened for the lifeguard to whistle and practiced a storm drill.

"So typically if there is thunder and lightning we call it for 20 minutes that means everyone gets out and gets into a shelter or a lifeguard room depending on how bad it is because there is a metal roof and after 20 minutes if we don't see thunder and lightning we can get back in," Kristin Duguid said.   According to the National Weather Service--- lightning has killed 42 people in the US each year for the passed decade!          

So if you are out hiking, swimming, boating or golfing always remember, "when thunder roars go indoors," Taylor said.