"We have issued 1,000 weather radios in two days we will not be giving any out tomorrow, Hancock said in an email. "We will have 300 weather radios for the hearing impaired only at the Cave Spring Fire Station from 9 am – 2 p.m. this Saturday. The same rules apply you must present a valid Georgia driver’s license."
While getting struck by lightning is usually considered a long shot, the Floyd County Emergency Management Agency advises residents to err on the side of caution during storms.
This week is the 33rd annual Georgia Severe Weather Awareness Week. In those 33 years, at least 52 people have been killed in Georgia by lightning strikes and dozens more injured, said FCEMA Director Scotty Hancock.
Lightning often accompanies thunderstorms and is most common in Georgia between June and September.
When a lightning storm strikes, Hancock said to seek shelter, avoid using electrical appliances and landline phones, postpone baths or showers and turn off the air conditioner.
If you are in the woods during a lightning storm, Hancock advised to seek shelter under smaller trees.
Objects to avoid outside include metal pipes, power lines and larger trees, he added.
Tim Herrington, FCEMA deputy director, advised residents to keep an eye and ear to the sky.
“If you can hear the thunder, then you are close enough to get hit by lightning,” Herrington said.
Floyd County residents wanting to keep up with severe weather alerts can pick up a free NOAA weather radio today and tomorrow from 1 to 5 p.m. on the second floor of the Floyd County Emergency Operation Center, 409 E. 12th St.
The give-away began Wednesday, with Herrington reporting that more than 400 radios were distributed to county residents.
Another 300 radios that vibrate and activate a strobe light will be given away to hearing-impaired residents of the county on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cave Spring Fire Station, 123 Fincher St.
A valid ID with a Floyd County address must be shown at all give-aways to receive a radio, and there is a limit of one unit per household.
The Rome News-Tribune will be spotlighting emergency preparedness tips each day in conjunction with Severe Weather Awareness Week. Here’s what’s coming:
Sunday: Severe Weather Awareness Week
Monday: Family preparedness
Tuesday: Thunderstorm safety
Wednesday: Tornado drill
Today: Lightning safety
Friday: Flood safety