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When Thunder Roars Head Indoors!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

July 12, 2018 (San Diego's East County) - We’ve seen them this week and we will continue to notice large cumulous clouds forming around southern California. This ‘monsoonal pattern’ is produced by an area of high pressure over the four corners. The clockwise flow draws moisture into southern California from the south. These clouds can produce lightning, thunder, hail and heavy rain reminds Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

Pay attention to weather forecasts and “when thunder roars, head indoors” as a safety precaution. There is no place outside that’s safe when thunderstorms are in the area.

If you hear thunder, that means lightning is close enough to strike you. Stay indoors and away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.

Be proactive.  If the forecast calls for possible thunderstorms, you may need to change some of your outdoor plans such as hiking, golf, swimming etc. If you are caught outside, immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, ridges or peaks. Never shelter under an isolated tree. Get indoors or remain in your car for at least 30 minutes after the storm passes.

Stay out of areas subject to flooding. This includes low lying areas, canyons, creeks or washes. Avoid already flooded areas and do not try to cross a flowing stream either by foot or car.  80% of flood deaths occur in vehicles, and most happen when drivers make a single, fatal mistake - trying to navigate through floodwaters reminds Chief DiGiovanna.

During storms make sure you bring in your pets!

For additional weather Flash Flood Safety, visit

*Note: The information in this article was compiled from various sources. These suggestions are not a complete list of every preventative or loss control measure. The information is not intended to replace additional safety manuals or the advice of another qualified professional(s). We make no guarantee of results from use of this information. We assume no liability in connection with the information nor the suggestions made.