Suspending a match for lightning/thunder

Discussion in 'Referee' started by Dr. Gamera, Jun 15, 2012.

  1. Dr. Gamera

    Dr. Gamera Member+

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    This used to be a sticky thread, but the thread seems to have been lost in the change to the new interface. For now, cached version of the first page here.

    Ukraine/France is in the midst of a lightning delay; hope that example is of some use the next time foolish people complain about a postponement in a game you're working.

    I'm not a referee, but I learned from that old sticky thread that safety comes first, lightning is unpredictable, and no game is worth the risk of dying.
    dadman repped this.


  2. Scrabbleship

    Scrabbleship Member

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    Just wondering, as this is mostly a US-based crowd, if the USSF has some sort of policy for lightning?

    Up here in Canada, we follow (or should be following, though I fully admit I was on a game just a couple weeks ago where we didn't) the 30/30 rule:
    Thirty seconds between lightning and thunder means the storm is about 10 kms/6 miles away. Seems like a lot to me, as does waiting 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder, but I'm sure they consulted the right people before putting out this policy.
  3. fairplayforlife

    fairplayforlife Member

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    That is pretty much the standard. Though most of the time some genius will try to tell you that if you only hear thunder and don't see lightning it is safe. My response is always, "What exactly do you think caused the thunder?"
  4. Eastshire

    Eastshire Member

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    In my area, if you see or hear thunder, you clear the field. No counting is required. The 30 minute delay is the same though. If you can see lightning or hear thunder, it can hit you next.


  5. SA14mars

    SA14mars Member

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    Same here. Although many fields have the automated warning systems installed so it "sees" the lightning and the horns go off before we even hear thunder.
  6. Bubba Atlanta

    Bubba Atlanta Member+

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  7. Scrabbleship

    Scrabbleship Member

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    Fancy! I want to live/referee where you live/referee.
  8. nonya

    nonya Member

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    Talk about crazy. Went to the Atlanta vs. Yankees game on Wed. in Atlanta. Second inning its starts to rain, by the 5th inning we all can see the lightning moving into the area. By the 6th inning we had cloud to cloud lightning that we all saw from the stadium, some thunder but not a lot. They all kept on playing. Im looking at Jeter and A-Rod who keep looking up at the sky, and I am wondering how many millions of dollars is invested on the field that can be wiped out with one strike. My die hard Yankee wife refused to leave her seat, said if she was going to die she would die looking at Jeter's sexy you know what.
    SA14mars repped this.
  9. SA14mars

    SA14mars Member

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    We've had too many deadly storms here. And they can come up really fast like the one we had on Wednesday. Also many parks are in flood-prone areas so the sirens are also to get you out if the creeks start to rise quickly.
    Scrabbleship repped this.
  10. Alberto

    Alberto Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, it was lost in the transition. We will sticky this thread in it's place.
  11. lacsap

    lacsap New Member

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    Since it has not be posted here yet - the link to NOAA lightning safety eduction site: http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/
    Their take is simple - HEAR thunder take shelter. As mentioned in old thread - waiting to see, or counting may put you into further danger with less time to clear fields.
    IASocFan repped this.
  12. refontherun

    refontherun Member

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    All I could think was, "At least get those little kids out of there and to some cover!"
  13. Sport Billy

    Sport Billy Moderator Staff Member

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    My backyard buts up to a soccer field :thumbsup: and there are baseball fields on the other side of the soccer field.
    On Sunday nights, the Men's league plays.
    I usually sit on my patio, have a beer, and watch the men play.

    This past Sunday, a storm rolled in and it lightninged and thundered a lot for at least 25 minutes before the downpour arrived.
    The game continued until the rain came.
    It made me nauseated.
    I couldn't watch.

    If it were children, I would have had them stop playing.
    These were (supposedly) adults.
  14. code1390

    code1390 Member

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    Lightning...scary stuff.

  15. elonpuckhog

    elonpuckhog Member

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  16. HoustonRef

    HoustonRef Member

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  17. Dayton Ref

    Dayton Ref Member

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    You know I always wondered about that. Mostly while I was carrying a metal hot dog container in the stands of Wrigley. At least they get a cart with rubber wheels to pull it with instead of the dozen guys pushing on the metal tube that teams used to use.
  18. Sport Billy

    Sport Billy Moderator Staff Member

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  19. reedg01

    reedg01 Member

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  20. SccrDon

    SccrDon Member

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    Question for the refs here - I'm a coach of a competitive team and I carry a lightning detector on days where storms are possible. When I have it with me at a game, I tell the refs that I have it and that I will tell them if it indicates lightning is near if they want me to. Is that a good approach?
    SA14mars and dadman repped this.
  21. elonpuckhog

    elonpuckhog Member

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    Absolutely. As a ref, I want to know as soon as possible for safety reasons. If the weather is iffy, I'm usually asking a couple people before the match to let me know if they see lightning. I would always welcome this type of info.
  22. fairplayforlife

    fairplayforlife Member

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    Sounds good to me but I would let the other coach in on this so that it isn't some surprise when you pull the device out and then the ref stops the game.
  23. SccrDon

    SccrDon Member

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    Good point that I should have mentioned. I tell the other coach as well.
  24. oldreferee

    oldreferee Member

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    I'm sure you are an honorable man, with the safety of the children in your charge as your number one priority. So, I can see positives in you having this equipment in your bag and sharing it's info with your referee crew.

    Nevertheless, my spidey senses are tingling.....
    I have seen multiple instances of referees being cowed into ignoring their explicit instructions on when to stop play (visible lightning, audible thunder, 30/30 rule) because some on-site meteorologist thinks it's safe to play.:devilish:

    So, DON'T BE THAT GUY.
    Bottom line, I think if you are using the device to try to convince the ref that it's NOT safe, I think I'm on board. If you are doing the opposite, I think you're out of line.
    SA14mars, La Rikardo and Dr. Gamera repped this.
  25. fairplayforlife

    fairplayforlife Member

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    Very valid point. Technology can make mistakes for one reason or another. I would say for the sake of safety, letting it notify you that you should stop play makes sense. Letting it tell you to continue play despite evidence to the contrary is a fool's errand.

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