Lightning fast Florida

Florida has many claims to fame…some better than others. Popularly known as the “lightening capital” of the United Sates, Florida experiences more lightning-related deaths than all other weather hazards combined. So what’s an outdoor lover to do?

During a lightning storm, remember:

* If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.

* Quickly move inside a home, building or hard top automobile (not a convertible). Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you’re safer inside a vehicle than outside, especially if you can avoid touching metal.

* Stay away from equipment that puts you in direct contact with electricity (corded phones, computers, power lines, etc.). In fact, it’s best to unplug equipment before the storm hits.

* Don’t sit on concrete floors or lean against concrete walls. Moisture absorbed by concrete can be a good conductor for electrical energy or lightning currents.

* When caught without shelter, avoid elevated areas, never lie flat on the ground, stay away from isolated trees and don’t go near bodies of water.


Lightning strike victims don’t carry an electrical charge, so there’s no need to fear providing immediate medical assistance. Call 911, and then:

1. If breathing has stopped, begin mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

2. If the heart has stopped, administer CPR.

3. If the person has a pulse and no breathing difficulties, look for other possible injuries such as burns, broken bones, loss of hearing and loss of eyesight.

Weekly Health Tips are brought to you by UCF Health, the College of Medicine’s physician practice. Offering primary and specialty care under one roof, UCF Health treats patients age 16 and up in primary care and age 18 and up for specialty care. Most major insurance plans are accepted. Two locations are now open: the original in East Orlando at Quadrangle and University boulevards just blocks from the main UCF campus and in Medical City at Narcoossee Road and Tavistock Lakes Boulevard. Schedule an appointment online today.