Nine myths and facts about lightning


26/07/2010

Scientists are studying lightning for hundreds of years. Although they know what causes lightning, these mysterious flashes of electricity kept many secrets.

Given that began in the summer holiday season, we invite you to fill up your piggy bank of knowledge useful and interesting facts about lightning. Consider how much actually meet some of the myths about lightning.

Myth: tornadoes and hurricanes more dangerous than lightning

Fact: Lightning kills more people each year than tornadoes or hurricanes. Only flood many more lives than lightning.

Myth: Even at home you can get lightning

Fact: probably the safest place during a thunderstorm - in the house, but that does not mean it does not need to take precautions.

If the building was hit by lightning, the electric current is most likely pass through the water supply or wiring before you leave the ground. Therefore, during the lightning did not talk on the telephone wire, stay away from running water (do not shower, do not wash dishes and hands). Do not use a stove, a computer or other devices connected to the electric grid.

Myth: Lightning always shoot down planes

Fact: In reality, lightning regularly enters the aircraft, but rarely leads to ruin. On average, at least once a year in each plane struck by lightning. Most of the planes are made of aluminum, which is a good conductor of electricity, so the aircraft provided strict safety rules.

Myth: during a storm, turn off electronic devices

Fact: The current surge may damage the electronics, even if lightning does not enter into your home. If you are not sure about the reliability of the device to protect against voltage surges, unplug the computer, TV and other electronics. If you start off appliances during a lightning storm, you have a chance to undergo electric shock, so this must be done before the storm.

Myth: during a lightning storm dangerous to be in the car

Fact: Actually, cars are one of the safest places during a thunderstorm if you are not able to enter the building. Just make sure that your car safe and sturdy roof: a golf cart or car convertibles will not work.

Myth: Lightning does not fall twice in the same place.

Fact: During thunderstorms, lightning can hit multiple times in the same place.

Myth: during a storm to be on the street is not safe.

Fact: If you are caught outdoors during a thunderstorm, try to hide in the building ground or in the car. If this is not possible, then the following tips will help to minimize the risk: avoid open spaces and lonely standing tall objects (such as trees). Stay out of the water - it is a good conductor of current. Do not lie down on the ground - this will increase the contact area, because if you are far away from the land struck by lightning - that the smaller the area of contact, the less current will flow into you.

Myth: You need to stay at home for another half an hour after the storm.

Fact: In most cases, lightning strikes in the people not in the midst of the storm. According to the U.S. National Weather Service (NWS), lightning can strike from a distance of 15 km from the place where there is rain, so if you hear thunder - then you are in the area of the threat of lightning.

NWS advises adhere to the following advice: "If you hear thunder, then wait out the house. From the house will be safe to go out in half an hour after the last thunder."

Myth: You can determine the distance to the storm, counting how many seconds have passed from the flash of light before thunder.

Fact: Surprisingly, this children’s trick really works. Light travels faster than sound, so at first we see a flash of light, and then the rumble of thunder.

To determine the distance to the storm, it is necessary to know the speed of sound: it is moving at a speed of 1 km for 3 seconds.

Original: Green


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