Is Your Building Ready When Lightning Strikes?

March 3, 2005
UL explains why lightning protection is important and provides questions to ask installers
According to Northbrook, IL-based Underwriters Laboratories (UL) Inc., “lightning accounts for more than $1 billion annually in structural damage to buildings in the United States.” Specifying, purchasing, and installing UL-certified lightning protection systems has the following benefits:Minimizes the risk of significant property damage caused by lightning strikes.Helps protect your investment from liability, downtime, and loss of business in the event of lightning damage.Gives you peace of mind that your UL-certified lightning protection system has been rigorously tested to provide maximum protection for building exteriors and interiors – including electrical and electronic equipment.Demonstrates your commitment to safety to insurers, local inspectors, and commercial tenants.Provides you with tools to make informed choices when selecting equipment and an installer.It’s important that a lightning protection system be installed – and installed properly – to provide higher levels of safety for commercial buildings, schools, hospitals, institutions, historic landmarks, sports arenas, and other public venues. Many insurers are requiring it. With thousands of buildings being damaged or destroyed by lightning each year, UL recommends asking the following questions to a professional installer:Are the installed products marked to indicate they comply with UL requirements?Has the system been independently verified by a third-party certifier as meeting the installation requirements of UL and/or the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)?Does the installer follow nationally recognized installation standards for lightning protection systems?Will the installation pass inspection by local building inspectors?Can the system help reduce insurance premiums for lightning damage – especially in regions where there is a documented high occurrence of lightning activity?To find out more about UL’s Master Label Certification Program of lightning protection equipment, or why lightning protection is important, visit the UL website ( To contact UL, phone (877-ULHELPS). This information was excerpted from UL Inc.’s brochure, Lightning Protection Systems.

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