According to NOAA's NWS, there have been 7 lightning fatalities so far this year, the most recent coming from North Carolina on July 18th as a 40-some year old man was walking to store. Note that 4 of these deaths have occurred in Florida, which is considered to be the lightning capital of the United States.
Myth: If you're caught outside during a thunderstorm, you should crouch down to reduce your risk of being struck.
Fact: Crouching doesn't make you any safer outdoors. Run to a substantial building or hard topped vehicle. If you are too far to run to one of these options, you have no good alternative. You are NOT safe anywhere outdoors. See our safety page for tips that may slightly reduce your risk.
Myth: Lightning never strikes the same place twice.
Fact: Lightning often strikes the same place repeatedly, especially if it's a tall, pointy, isolated object. The Empire State Building is hit an average of 23 times a year
Myth: If it’s not raining or there aren’t clouds overhead, you’re safe from lightning.
Fact: Lightning often strikes more than three miles from the center of the thunderstorm, far outside the rain or thunderstorm cloud. “Bolts from the blue” can strike 10-15 miles from the thunderstorm.
Myth: Rubber tires on a car protect you from lightning by insulating you from the ground.
Fact: Most cars are safe from lightning, but it is the metal roof and metal sides that protect you, NOT the rubber tires. Remember, convertibles, motorcycles, bicycles, open-shelled outdoor recreational vehicles and cars with fiberglass shells offer no protection from lightning. When lightning strikes a vehicle, it goes through the metal frame into the ground. Don't lean on doors during a thunderstorm.
Myth: A lightning victim is electrified. If you touch them, you’ll be electrocuted.
Fact: The human body does not store electricity. It is perfectly safe to touch a lightning victim to give them first aid. This is the most chilling of lightning Myths. Imagine if someone died because people were afraid to give CPR!
Myth: If outside in a thunderstorm, you should seek shelter under a tree to stay dry.
Fact: Being underneath a tree is the second leading cause of lightning casualties. Better to get wet than fried!
See more on lightning including safety tips HERE:
According to NOAA's SPC, the PRELIMINARY 2017 tornado count is 1190 (through July 23). Note that is the most active year for tornadoes since 2011, when there were 1,662 tornadoes. Keep in mind there was a major tornado outbreak in the Gulf Coast region from April 25-28, 2011 that spawned nearly 500 tornadoes, some of which were deadly. That outbreak is known as the Super Outbreak of 2011 and has gone down in history as one of the biggest, costliest and one of the deadliest tornado outbreaks in history.
2.) Heavy rain across portions of the Southwest, Central and Southern Rockies, and the Central and Southern Plains, Thu-Fri, Jul 27-Jul 28.
3.) Heavy rain across portions of the Northeast, Thu-Fri, Jul 27-Jul 28.
4.) Heavy rain across portions of the Southeast and the Mid-Atlantic, Sat-Sun, Jul 29-Jul 30.
5.) Flooding occurring or imminent across portions of the Upper and Middle Mississippi Valley and the Great Lakes.
6.) Flooding possible across portions of the Central and Southern Plains, the Central and Southern Rockies, the Central Great Basin, and the Southwest.
7.) Flooding likely across portions of the Middle Mississippi Valley.
8.) Slight risk of much above-normal temperatures for portions of the Great Basin, the Northern Plains, the Northern Rockies, California, the Pacific Northwest, and the Southwest, Tue-Sat, Aug 1-Aug 5.
9.) Severe Drought across parts of the Great Plains, Arizona, California, and Hawaii.
"The life had been fading from Grant Zerbe's stunted chickpeas for the better part of a month, and now drought’s hot breath was burning through the final green inch of every plant stem.The Montana farmer’s worst growing season in 30 years was coming to a brutal end. There are few crops to harvest in the region, and with a lack of food and water, unwanted livestock are headed to auction. “Normally, we’d be getting 1,200 pounds to an acre,” Zerbe said. “The crop would be so thick you couldn’t see the ground.” Northeast Montana is experiencing the worst drought in the country. On U.S. Drought Monitor maps, the Montana portion branded "extreme" spans 350 miles. Combined with drought in the Dakotas, Montana’s losses contribute to what the U.S. Department of Agriculture expects to be a 64 million bushel loss in wheat production. Durum, a specialty crop for Montana and North Dakota, is expected to be down in bushels 45 percent from last year."
See more from BillingsGazette HERE:
(Frazer area farmer Grant Zerbe checks a chickpea crop as a drought grips eastern Montana. LARRY MAYER, Gazette Staff)
According to the US Drought Monitor, parts of Montana are now under an EXCEPTIONAL Drought. While nearly 2% is considered to be in an EXCEPTIONAL drought, 22% is under an EXTREME drought. Also, nearly 65% of the state is considered to be either abnormally dry or in some type of drought.
EXCEPTIONAL Drought in North Dakota
By Todd Nelson, filling in for DouglasIt's been 30 years since the 1987 Homer Hanky was being waved. Big bats from Dan Gladden in game 1 and Kent Hrbek in game 6 along with a loaded pitching staff that included Bert Blylevin and MVP Frankie "Sweet Music" Viola helped bring home the 1st World Series for the MN Twins that year. My ears are still ringing from the roar in Dome. WOW - What a year!
It has also been 30 years since the 1987 Twin Cities Superstorm when 10 inches of rain fell at the Twin Cities Airport from July 23rd to 24th. This caused massive flooding across parts of the metro, which lead to nearly $30 million in damages and 2 flood related deaths.
1987, no question, was an interesting summer.
Sticky sunshine returns Tuesday with dewpoints spiking in the upper 60s and low 70s. This could help spark a few strong to severe storms later with rounds of heavy rain overnight. Some in southern Minnesota could see as much as 1 to 3 inches of rain through early Wednesday, but Chamber of Commerce days look to return Thursday through Saturday. Soak it up!
Average Low: 64F (Record: 50F set in 1891)
Daylight LOST since summer solstice (June 20th): ~41 minutes
2.9 Days Since New Moon
"North Korea is experiencing its worst drought since 2001, prompting officials to fear an increase in food shortage in the communist country that has suffered serious famine for years, a report by a United Nations agency revealed. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization released the report on Thursday that detailed a prolonged dry period in North Korea from April to June, an important time for crop development. It's production of staple crops such as rice, corn, potatoes and soybeans has been damaged, "threatening food security for a large part of its population," the agency said."
See more from FoxNews HERE:
(Image Courtesy: FoxNews)