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Tropical Storm Bertha has formed over the Atlantic with winds of 45 miles per hour. The storm is not forecast to become a hurricane. The storm is not forecast to move into the Gulf of Mexico.

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TROPICAL STORM BERTHA

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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Lightning safety

It's easy to forget just how dangerous that force of nature can be. And every now and then nature gives us a reminder."

Tuesday morning, Gary Covella was with his son when lightning struck a tree just feet from his house.

Gary Covella  "I was watching our big screen TV over there, Christian Garmen was on with the local weather, and all of the sudden, we just heard this ear splitting explosion."

The bolt scarred the 90 foot pine, down to the ground, and sent a jolt into his home that destroyed his brand new 65" television.
Covella says it could've been worse, had the lightning struck the house.

Gary Covella "Lightning is hotter than the sun. So a strike next to the window, I don't know what it would've done. But it certainly had me shaking afterwards."

Now he wants others to be prepared for that situation.
So here are a few ways to protect yourself.
If you are caught outside, avoid trees for cover, and stay away from bodies of water.
Also, stay away from concrete floors and walls if possible.
   
Now inside the home, stay away from doors and windows, those can be some of the most dangerous areas in the middle of the storm.

Any home office or work station can be filled with electronics that can also be destroyed by lightning. Even things like telephones need to be unplugged from the wall. Computers, printers and scanners, even cable modems and routers should all be unplugged to protect them from lightning.

Now nearly everything in a home entertainment system can absolutely be destroyed in lightning. Whether it's your television, gaming console, DVD player, stereos..anything that brings electricity into the house needs to be unplugged to keep it safe from the storm.
   
Gary Covella "It's much cheaper just to yank a plug out than to have to pay for a TV repair like that."

With more extreme lightning rolling through the are Tuesday evening, it's better to be safe than sorry. In Okaloosa County, Rob Brown, Channel Three News.