poses an enormous threat for those participating in outdoor
sports and recreation event.
is the second largest killer due to storms, exceeded only
by floods. Each year hundreds of people are killed or injured
in lightning mishaps.
number of lightning casualties in recreational and sports
settings has risen alarmingly. One reason is both thunderstorms
and outdoor events coincide at the same time - from 10 am
to 7pm between late spring and early fall. July has more lightning srikes than any other month.
is our suggested lightning risk management strategy for outdoor
local weather forecasts and warnings.
a chain of command that identifies who is to actively
look for signs of threatening weather and make the call
to remove individuals from the area.
lightning safety announcement should be made over the
public address address system with information on what
to do and where to find a safe location.
a shelter. The best way to avoid lightning is to take
shelter. The primary choice for a safe location is any
substantial, occupied building. The secondary choice
is a vehicle with a metal roof and closed windows. Avoid
small structures, such as picnic shelters or athletic
storage sheds, trees, poles, and the highest point in
always accompanies lightning. The "flash-to-bang"
method should be used to estimate how far away the lightning
is actually occurring. This method involves calculating
the time between the time lightning is seen and thunder
is heard by counting the seconds from the point at which
lightning is sighted to the point at which thunder is
heard. Divide this number by five to obtain the number
of miles away the lightning is actually occurring. Experts
say if the count is 30 or less, all should be evacuated.
It does not have to be raining for lightning to strike.
Lightning can strike from as far as 10 miles away from
the rain band.
or suspend activities if a thunderstorm appears imminent--darkening
clouds, high winds, thunder or lightning--until the
storm has passed, then wait 30 minutes before returning
caught in a lightning storm who feel their hair stand
on end, skin tingle or hear crackling noises (signs
of an imminent lightning strike) should assume the "lightning
position" (also known as the lightning-safe position,
although it still may not prevent a lightning strike);
crouch on the ground, weight on the balls of your feet,
feet together, head lowered, eyes closed, and ears covered.
This position lowers the person's height and minimizes
the area in contact with the surface of the ground.
If you have any insulated objects handy, like a foam
pad or soft pack of clothes, stand on them. Never lie
flat on the ground.