storms

LSU AgCenter

It's hurricane season. It's time to look at the trees in your landscape. Do you see trees with large dead branches? Any completely dead trees? They should be pruned or removed. A sickly tree that is low in vigor or that is showing significant signs of decay or rotten areas in the trunk should be questioned, since it might be a threat in a wind storm.

Lightning strikes have killed at least 20 people in the U.S. so far this year, according to the National Weather Service. That's higher than the average for recent years, the service says.

Most people who are injured or killed by lightning, it turns out, are not struck directly — instead, the bolt lands nearby.

That's what happened to Steve Marshburn in 1969. He was working inside a bank and says lightning somehow made its way through an ungrounded speaker at the drive-through window to the stool where he was sitting.

A study published Monday suggests Americans are less afraid of hurricanes with female names.

This is a real study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences — not The Onion.

Researchers at the University of Illinois and Arizona State looked at deaths caused by hurricanes between 1950 — when storms were first named — and 2012.