Is it Safe to Sit on a Porch during a Thunderstorm?

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Is it Safe to Sit on a Porch during a Thunderstorm?

Many people believe that it is safe to sit on a porch during a thunderstorm, but this isn’t always the case.

This article will discuss whether or not sitting on your porch during a storm is safe and what you should do if you are in danger of getting struck by lightning.

Is it Safe to Sit on a Porch during a Thunderstorm?

The short answer is NO – it’s not safe to sit on a porch during a thunderstorm! In fact, lightning injuries are the leading weather-related cause of death in the United States.

Lightning is attracted to tall objects. A porch roof is an ideal place for a lightning bolt to strike, as its height can focus the power of the storm to that point!

Also, if you are touching anything metal, such as a railing or wet concrete, you will provide another connection for the electrical current.

Once the lightning finds earth again, it travels through your body and down into the ground to complete its circuit.

Electricity seeks its easiest path back to earth – which means you could become part of that circuit!

Is it Safe to Sit on a Porch during a Thunderstorm?
Patio Lightning Strikes Statistics

Is it Safe to Sit on a Patio during a Thunderstorm?

A patio or porch might typically provide shelter from rain and other volatile weather, but this does not make it a safe space to sit during electrical storms.

In fact, the opposite is true! One of the main reasons why you should avoid sitting on your patio during a thunderstorm is because wet surfaces like decks and porches become lightning rods themselves.

If lightning strikes nearby, it will travel through conductive materials (such as concrete pavers and metal rails) until it reaches earth – the last place it encounters resistance – which results in an electrical shock for anyone touching that material at that moment.

This risk is increased if there are multiple points of contact (like feet), and if the material is grounded (i.e., connected to earth by metal rods).

Is it Safe to Sit on a Balcony during a Thunderstorm?

It is NOT safe to sit on a balcony, patio, or in an open-air area during a thunderstorm.

You are still at risk of being struck by lightning even though you are indoors. Remember that the current can travel through telephone lines and wires.

Is it safe to be on a screened in porch during a thunderstorm?

No. Just because it is covered does not mean you will be safe from lightning hitting your house and traveling through the electrical system.

Lightning can travel along piping, telephone or cable wiring, and even improperly grounded appliances such as hair dryers, electric stoves, washing machines, etc.

Although the porch may not be hit directly by lightning there is a possibility that it can find its way into your home on these other paths mentioned above causing injury and damage inside of your home.

If you are at home during a thunderstorm it’s best to stay indoors until 30 minutes after the storm has passed overhead.

What To Do During A Thunderstorm?

  • All electrical appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers and computers should be turned off.
  • Make sure all windows and doors are shut tight to avoid water coming in.
  • Close down the fireplace if it is a gas fire place or wood stove. Do not use any naked flames during a thunderstorm .
  • Do not take a bath or shower unless absolutely necessary.
  • Do not stand near windows or doors when lightning is near.
  • Do not use corded telephones, battery operated radios or TV sets. Do not try to attach cords from computers, stereos etc., to surge protectors since surges can travel through power lines and cords.

Conclusion

The answer to this question is no because lightning can strike anywhere. You are not safe on a porch during a thunderstorm and should seek shelter inside the house or in your car if one is close enough.

If you’re stuck outside without access to either of these options then crouch down as low as possible with your head tucked into your arms for protection

Resources: Weather.Gov

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