Monsoon Season Safety Tips
Monsoon season typically starts in the spring and ends in the fall. Monsoon season is a time of turbulent weather creating severe thunderstorms. Severe thunderstorms may produce lightning, high winds, flash flooding, hail, and tornadoes.
Take care of the basics by assembling your 72-hour disaster kit and family disaster plan. Keep accessible your NOAA weather radio and extra batteries from your 72-hour disaster kit. To get involved in your community, consider taking the Skywarn Storm Spotter class. Subscribe to severe weather notification services like Interactive National Weather Service (iNWS) - http://inws.wrh.noaa.gov/
. Scan the skies 360 degrees around and overhead before leaving a safe location
Find more weather safety tips at the National Weather Service Albuquerque Office's Weather Safety Tips
Lightning and Thunderstorms
- Check the weather forecast before leaving for the outdoors.
- Watch for signs of approaching storms.
- If a storm is approaching, keep a NOAA Weather Radio or AM/FM radio with you.
- If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning. Go to safe shelter immediately.
- Move to a sturdy building or car. Do Not take shelter in small sheds, under isolated trees, or in convertible automobiles.
- If lightning occurs and sturdy shelter is not available, get inside a hard top automobile and keep the windows up.
- Get out of boats and away from water.
- Telephone lines and metal pipes can conduct electricity. Unplug appliances not necessary for obtaining weather information. Avoid using the telephone or any electrical appliances. Use phones only in an emergency.
- Do not take a bath or shower.
- If you feel your skin tingle or your hair stand on end, squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet. Place your hands on your knees with your head between them. Make yourself the smallest target possible; minimize your contact with the ground.
Flooding - Turn Around, Don't Drown
- Drowning is the number one cause of flood deaths. Six inches of swiftly moving water can knock you off your feet. If you live in a flood prone area have an evacuation plan.
- Store materials like sandbags, plywood, plastic sheeting and lumber for protection from floodwaters and to make quick repairs after a severe storm.
- Store materials above flood levels.
- Learn where to find high ground, which is safe from flooding. In a flash flood seek high ground quickly.
- Contact an insurance agent to discuss flood insurance coverage. Flood losses are not covered under normal homeowners' insurance policies. Flood insurance is available through the National Flood Insurance Program. Get coverage early-there is a waiting period before it takes effect.
- Avoid low-water crossings.
- Avoid camping in a wash or in the bottom of a canyon with steep side slopes.
- Be especially cautious at night. Flood dangers are much more difficult to see in the dark.
- Avoid areas already flooded, especially if the water is flowing fast.
- Do not attempt to cross flowing streams.
- As little as ten inches of water can float average-sized cars, mini-vans, SUVs and trucks. Strength of the flow is the critical force.
- The safest place to be during high winds is indoors. Postpone outdoor activities if a wind advisory or high wind warning has been issued.
- Take cover next to a building or under a shelter.
- Watch for flying debris. Tree limbs may break; awnings and street signs may become loose during strong wind gusts
- Report downed lines to your local utility emergency center and to the police.
- Do not try to free lines or to remove debris yourself.
- Avoid anything that may be touching downed lines, including vehicles or tree branches. Puddles and even wet or snow-covered ground can conduct electricity in some cases.
- If a line falls on your car, stay inside the vehicle.
- Take care not to touch any of the metal frames of your vehicle. Honk your horn, roll down the window and warn anyone who may approach of the danger. Call or have someone call 9-1-1. Do not exit the car until help arrives and advises you to do so, unless the vehicle is on fire. To exit, open the door, but do not step out. Jump, without touching any of the metal portions of the car's exterior, to safe ground and get quickly away.
- Watch for objects blowing across the roadway and into your path.
- Keep a safe distance from cars in adjacent lanes as strong gusts could push a car outside its lane of travel.
- Stay away from windows
- Take cover immediately
- If in a car, pull off the road preferably under a bridge (Note: NOT recommended for tornadoes)
- Vehicles offer good protection from hail up to about golf ball size, but significant windshield and body damage can result with hail larger than golf balls
- Carry a blanket in your car to protect you from shattered windshields