During thunderstorms no place outside is safe. If you can hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike. Some workers are at greater risk than others. People who work outdoors in open spaces, on or near tall objects, with explosives, or with conductive materials such as metal have a greater exposure to lightning risks.
When a thunderstorm threatens:
Don’t Start Anything You Can’t Quickly Stop
* Listen to daily forecasts so you know what to expect during the day. (www.nws.noaa.gov)
* Also pay attention to early signs of storms: high winds, dark clouds, rain, distant thunder or lightning.
Know Your Company’s Lightning Safety Program
Businesses that have high risk functions, such as explosive storage or field repairs, should have a formal lightning warning policy that meets two basic requirements:
* Lightning danger warnings can be issued in time for everyone to get to a safe location.
* Access to a safe place.
Know What Objects And Equipment To Avoid
* Anything tall or high; rooftops, ladders, scaffolding, utility poles, etc.
* Large equipment; cranes, bulldozers, tractors, backhoes, track loaders, etc.
* Materials or surfaces that conduct electricity; scaffolding, metal equipment, utility lines, water, plumbing…
* Areas with explosives or munitions.
If A Co-Worker Is Struck By Lightning
- Lightning victims do not carry an electrical charge, are safe to touch, and need urgent medical attention.
- Call 9-1-1 and perform CPR if the person is unresponsive or not breathing.
- Use an Automatic External Defibrillator if one is available.