Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Thunderstorms are regional convective weather with lightning stroke and flash. It is a strong convective weather system, usually accompanied by heavy rain or hail and even by snowstorm in winter. In ancient civilization, the thunderstorms have a tremendous influence. There are myths associated with thunderstorms whether in ancient China, Rome or America.
Cause of or energy in the thunderclouds is mainly a result of the atmosphere motion. Air movements, friction and wind effects, make the thunderclouds cut Earth's magnetic field lines. So different charges and charged particles are forced to be separated and polarized, and finally a thundercloud is formed with a large number of charges. When the electric intensity gets strong enough, it leads to discharges within the cloud, between clouds or to other objects such as the earth or buildings, which is the so called lightening. The lightening releases billions of watts of energy within a few thousandths to tenths of a second. Thunderstorms can be divided into three types of Single Cell Storms, Multicell Storms and Supercell Storms, based on the instability of the atmosphere and relative wind speed at different levels.
Keep safe in thunderstorm weather:
1. Stay indoors. People who work outdoors should take refuge in buildings.
2. DO NOT swim or do other water sports. Keep away from water and find shelter.
3. Do not use the phone or any other electrical appliances with a plug, including computers.
4. Do not touch the antenna, taps, pipes, metal wire mesh or other similar devices.
5. Do not use the sprinklers.
6. DO NOT deal with flammable materials in OPEN containers.
7. DO NOT stand at the peak or near objects with high electrical conductivity. Trees or masts are easily struck by lightning, so keep distance. Do not lie on the ground, especially wet ground.
8. People on hiking and other outdoor activities should be aware of the latest weather information. So why not carry a radio.
9. Do not stay in rivers, streams or low-lying areas as heavy rain may occur at any time.
10. When travel through highways or bridges, beware of strong winds.
11. Beware of storm or water tornado when in a sea boat.
12. In the event of a tornado, immediately hike in sturdy buildings. Stay away from windows, crouch on the ground and protect your head with hands or thick pads. If outdoors, be away from trees, cars or anything else that may be blown.

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