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After a Lightning Storm

Stay indoors at least 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder before you go back outside. Help victims. There is no danger to anyone helping a person who has been struck by lightning — no electric charge remains. So, lightning victims are safe to touch and need urgent medical attention.

If someone is struck by lightning

Get emergency medical help as soon as possible. Call 911. If more than one person is struck by lightning, treat persons who are unconscious first. They are at greatest risk of cardiac arrest.

  • A person struck by lightning may appear dead, with no pulse or breath. Prompt, proper first aid could save their lives.
  • If the person is unresponsive or not breathing, start cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) immediately.
  • Consider an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED), if one is available

Treat those who are injured but conscious next. Common injuries from being struck by lightning are burns, wounds and broken bones. Loss of hearing or eyesight and other nervous system damage may also be expected.

For more information on lightning, see: