Summer Lightning is Dangerous for Lawn Care Workers

Summer Lightning is Dangerous for Lawn Care Workers

Summer thunder storms are beautiful. They produce sheets of rain, swirling cloud patterns, and reduced temperatures that make summer afternoons bearable. Summer thunder storms also produce lightning that can kill lawn care workers. While summer’s intense heat creates dangerous working conditions for lawn care operators, another weather phenomenon, summer lightning, can create equally dangerous conditions.

Keeping your lawn care customer on schedule is tedious this time of year and summer thunder storms add to the frustration. Though it is very tempting to keep mowing as long as possible and continue mowing as soon as the rain stops to attempt to keep your customers on schedule, all lawn care operators should be aware of the dangers of summer lightning strikes. According to the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Association (NOAA) the threat of lightning begins with an approaching thunderstorm and may persist for more than 30 minutes after the last sound of thunder.

The Warning Signs
High winds, rainfall, and a darkening cloud cover are the warning signs for possible cloud-to-ground lightning strikes. While many lightning casualties happen at the beginning of an approaching storm, more than 50 percent of lightning deaths occur after the thunderstorm has passed. The lightning threat diminishes after the last sound of thunder, but may persist for more than 30 minutes. When thunderstorms are in the area, but not overhead, the lightning threat can exist when skies are clear.

Though lightning strikes that injure lawn care workers are rare, we should all be aware of the potential damage of summer thunder storms and take appropriate action to protect ourselves and our workers.

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