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Chesterfield Quarterback League Thunderstorm and Lightning Procedure

Chesterfield Quarterback League Thunderstorm and Lightning Procedure

To provide guidance to all teams regarding the monitoring of weather conditions, pre-planning, and taking actions to minimize lightning related safety risks at athletic fields during games and practice.

  • The assigned ADC or a person designated by the League will determine how close the lightning is by practicing the flash-to-bang method for measuring of lightning distance as it approaches. Using this method, one counts the seconds from seeing the lightning flash to hearing the thunder. For each 5- second count, lightning is approximately 1 mile away. (Example- at 25 seconds, the strike is 5 miles away.) If lightning can be seen, there is a potential risk and shelter should be taken.
  • Patrons will be properly informed when a thunderstorm watch is in effect and what procedures will be followed during this time to include: play may be suspended, what the “clear the area” signal will be, where to seek shelter, and what routes to take as they evacuate the area.
  • The assigned ADC or a person designated by the League will be responsible for monitoring weather forecasts, watching for developing weather conditions, and timing the flash-to-bang intervals at the first sound of thunder.
  • Upon detection of a storm, by crash of thunder or bolt of lightning, the assigned ADC or a person designated by the League will make an announcement by loud speaker to clear the fields.
  • Patrons and teams will be expected to leave the field once the announcement is made and seek shelter immediately for at least 15 minutes.
  • Each occurrence of thunder and/or lightning will restart the 15 minute wait. The wait will last as long as the Head Official and/or the assigned ADC or a person designated by the League determine it is either safe to play or suspend the game. Once a game is suspended, all games remaining in the set to be played will be suspended.
  • When the appropriate time has passed, the assigned ADC or a person designated by the League will make an announcement to open the fields for play once again.
  • Once the announcement is made, the game will resume play after each team is allotted 5 minutes of warm-ups or longer if the assigned ADC or a person designated by the League allows it.
  • If an assigned ADC or a person designated by the League is not at the field during the event, the home team’s ADC and/or voting rep will be responsible for making the decision.
  • The Head Official and/or the assigned ADC or a person designated by the League can make a final decision to suspend play at any time due to impending or current weather conditions.
  • The assigned ADC or a person designated by the League is encouraged to utilize a weather app on their cell phone to determine any severe weather threat or lightning in the area of their location to determine if shelter will be needed.
  • This policy also applies to practices. The coaches and/or the Association’s League Representative at the practice field are responsible for enforcing the same protocol during practice times.

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