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Lightning Procedures

Lightning Procedures

Lightning can strike quickly and unexpectedly, and it can be deadly. We do not take chances with lightning. Obey all lightning policies in place at any park, field, facility, event.

In addition:
● If you can see lightning then you should leave the field, and any open space including the parking lot and take cover inside a vehicle or building.
● Return to field/play should occur a minimum of twenty (20) minutes after the most recent sighting of lightning if it is clear the storm has passed, and thirty (30) minutes if it is not clear the storm has passed, on the radar.
● Understanding of SAFE lightning shelters is essential.
● SAFE evacuation sites include:
          ○ Fully enclosed metal vehicles with windows up.
          ○ Substantial buildings.
          ○ The low ground. Seek cover in clumps of bushes.
● UNSAFE LIGHTNING SHELTER AREAS include
          ○ All outdoor metal objects like flag poles, fences and gates, high mast light poles, metal bleachers, golf cars, machinery, etc.
          ○ AVOID trees.
          ○ AVOID water.
          ○ AVOID open fields.
          ○ AVOID the high ground.
● Lightning's distance from you is easy to calculate: if you hear thunder, it and the associated lightning are within auditory range…about 6-8 miles away. The distance from Strike A to Strike B also can be 6-8 miles. Ask yourself why you should NOT go to shelter immediately. A good lightning safety motto is: "If you can see it (lightning) flee it; if you can hear it (thunder), clear it."
● Wait a minimum of 30 minutes from the last observed lightning or thunder before resuming activities. This can be reduced to 20 minutes, if it is absolutely clear and the storm cell has passed. If you have any doubts, then use 30 minutes.
● People who have been struck by lightning do not carry an electrical charge and are safe to handle. Apply first aid immediately if you are qualified to do so. Get emergency help promptly.
● A coach should never ask players to ‘quickly pick up equipment’ before evacuating the fields because of lightning.