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Pepco Offers Lightning Safety Tips

Power Company Reminds Customers to Go Indoors When Thunder Roars!

Washington - Pepco wants to remind its customers that lightning safety should be practiced every day of the year, but especially during the summer months, which is the peak season for this deadly weather phenomenon.

The National Weather Service reports that lightning strikes more than 400 people in the United States each year. About 60 of those die and many more are left with permanent disabilities. More than 70 percent of lightning fatalities occur between June and August. To date in 2009, 23 deaths have been attributed to lightning nationally.

"Lightning is unpredictable," says Michael J. Nappi, Pepco's manager of Safety Services. "People should stay clear of poles, wires, metal fences and trees when lightning is in the area. Lightning can strike as far as 10 miles from an area where it is raining. That's about the distance you can hear thunder. If you can hear thunder, you are within striking distance. Seek safe shelter immediately ."

To avoid being struck by lightning, Pepco offers its customers the following safety tips:

  •  Go to a safe shelter immediately, preferably indoors. Avoid metal structures, picnic pavilions and small canopies. As a last resort, get in a hardtop vehicle and keep the windows closed, 
  •  Never go under a tree or any other tall structure during a thunderstorm,
  • Avoid using a land-line telephone or electrical appliances during a thunderstorm unless it's an emergency,
  • Monitor the weather forecast when you're planning to be outdoors; 
  •  Have a plan for getting to a safe place when a thunderstorm approaches.

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Pepco, a subsidiary of Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), delivers safe, reliable and affordable electric service to more than 750,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

© Potomac Electric Power Company, 2019. All Rights Reserved.