Severe Summer Weather Awareness Week: Hail Safety Tips
Posted on 4/23/2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Cecily Fong
April 23, 2009
Bismarck, ND - Governor John Hoeven has proclaimed April 20 - 24 Severe Summer Weather Awareness Week. One week, every April, is set aside to focus attention on severe summer weather and the need for the public to be informed and prepared for it.
Severe Summer Weather Awareness Week encourages the public, businesses, schools, and government agencies to focus on being prepared and being informed about severe summer weather.
Severe summer storms can cause damaging winds, hail, rural fires, flash flooding, hazardous materials releases, and power outages. Experience has demonstrated that a well-informed and prepared public can better cope with and survive life threatening severe summer storms.
In a car: Stop driving. If you can see a safe place close-by to drive to (like inside a garage or under a service station awning), do so as soon as you can. Make sure you pull completely off the highway. Do not stop under bridges or overpasses.
Do NOT leave the vehicle until it stops hailing. Your car will furnish reasonable protection.
Stay away from car windows. Cover your eyes with something (like a piece of clothing). If possible, get onto the floor face down, or lay down on the seat with your back to the windows. Put very small children under you, and cover their eyes.
In a building: Seek shelter immediately in a sturdy building. Stay inside until the hail stops. Stay away from skylights and windows, especially windows that are being struck by hail.
Account for all family members, building occupants, pets, etc. Do not go outside for any reason. Large hail can cause serious or even fatal injuries. Avoid using phones and electrical appliances during a severe storm to avoid the danger of electrocution from lightning.
Outdoors: If you are caught outdoors, seek shelter immediately. If you can't find something to protect your entire body, at least find something to protect your head. Stay out of culverts and lowland areas that might fill suddenly with water. Trees are a last resort. It is common during severe storms for trees to lose branches. Also, large isolated trees attract lightning.