After lightning has struck, there is nothing more important than seeing to the safety and needs of your loved ones. But sometimes people are afraid to touch a lightning victim.
Once lightning has struck a person or even an object, however, the person or object does not carry a charge and cannot harm you. Although lightning is electrical, it is not like a house current.
How To Help Injured Others
- Administer First Aid immediately and call 911.
- Check for breathing and for a pulse. If there is none, begin to administer CPR.
- A lightning victim often suffers severe burns in two places on the body: where the bolt entered and where it exited. Expect to find more than one injury.
Beware Of Hazards
- Avoid downed power lines. Keep children and pets far away.
- To prevent accidental fires, use flashlights, not candles to see if power is on or off after a storm. (More people die as a result of fires caused by candles than from the actual impact of the disaster itself.)
- Keep pets on a leash.
- Assess Psychological Effects
- In addition to the obvious physical damage, lightning can sometimes cause emotional trauma and distress. Crisis counseling can help.
- Should you or your family need or desire crisis counseling, contact your local American Red Cross Chapter for information about resources in your area.
- Address your problems one at a time. Because you took responsibility, you protected your lives. The rest can be rebuilt.