Check the forecast constantly
While this may seem like a no brainer, it’s easy to leave your house without checking the weather, especially when you’re in a rush. The weather is very unpredictable—and that goes double for summer thunderstorms—but you can minimize your chances of every being caught without the proper gear by taking two minutes to check your local forecast before heading out the door. Everyone has their favorite weather app and website, but you can’t go wrong going straight to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association. John Jensenius, a lightning safety specialist, at the National Weather Service, NOAA, says they have people updating the forecast 24/7.
“When thunder roars, go indoors”
Making sure your whole family understands the dangers of a thunderstorm is very important, which is why NOAA’s main slogan is, “when thunder roars, go indoors.” According to Jensenius, thunder is a tell-tale sign that lightning is on its way. “Thunder should serve as an immediate warning that a thunderstorm is close enough to strike,” he says. Lightning actually causes thunder by heating the air and causing a shock wave which becomes a sound wave, aka the rolling rumbling of thunder. (Here are 10 more weird facts about lightning strikes.) If you can’t remember anything else about this article, “when thunder roars, go indoors,” would definitely be the most important.