Weather and Health
National Public Health Week takes place from April 4-10, 2011. This year’s theme is “Safety is NO Accident: Live Injury Free.” Safety from weather events is central to keeping people well. A 2009 NOAA study found that floods, extreme heat and rip currents are leading causes of weather-related fatalities. Common causes of weather-related injuries are tornadoes, extreme heat and winter storms. With winter weather largely behind us, most of the weather-related risks to life and safety are coming up in spring and summer.
Viewer Tip: This is good time to remember some basic weather safety tips that will keep you and your family safe.
- Heat: Even when the outside temperature is relatively mild (about 70 degrees) the temperature inside a sealed car can rise quickly – up to 40 degrees in 60 minutes. Please don’t leave kids or pets alone in a car, even for a few minutes.
- Floods: As winter snow melts and rain falls, floods will occur in some parts of the country. Remember the National Weather Service’s advice to “Turn Around, Don’t Drown.” Never cross flooded roads or pathways in a car or on foot – find another, safe route.
- Lightning: If you can hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike. The only safe place when lightning is nearby is inside a substantial building or a metal-topped vehicle.
This information is provided by the American Meteorological Society, a partner in National Public Health Week.