Lightning conductors in action. Image credit

Lightning conductors in action. Image credit

ZIMSEC O Level Combined Science Notes: Lightning and safety

  • Lightning has very high voltages
  • It can electrocute, maim or kill a person if they are struck
  • Several precautions can be taken to prevent this from happening:
  • People should never stand underneath trees during a storm as lightning usually strikes the tallest objects
  • Disconnect roof-top television aerials
  • Construct lightning conductors (also known as lightning rods) and placing them either on roof tops or near the buildings that are to be protected
  • It is safe to stand inside:
  • Metal buildings
  • Buildings that are protected by lightning conductors
  • But it is dangerous to stand near:
  • isolated trees
  • metal objects
  • fences
  • large rocks
  • hill tops
  • If a thatched building is struck by lighting the electric charges will pass through the human body because it is a better conductor compared to the air and walls
  • An electric conductor can be constructed using a ┬ápole and barbed wire
  • Rocks should be placed around the base of of the pole to keep animals and people away from it
  • Touching the wire/pole during a storm can result in electrocution

To access more topics go to the Combined Science Notes page.

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