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Meteorologists in Beijing are experimenting with rockets to diffuse rain clouds in hopes of obtaining better weather for the 2008 Olympics

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Severe Weather Strikes Sport and Recreation

From tornadoes and floods to severe thunderstorms and lightning, we are all living through a summer of extreme weather conditions. Lightning this season has struck participants on the baseball diamond, golf course, campgrounds and deep sea diving. SIRC is working with Environment Canada to spread the news about lightning safety.

Feature Articles

30-30 Rule

Be sure your sport association has a lightning safety policy and that everyone knows the 30-30 rule.


  • When you can count 30 seconds or less between lightning and thunder, head for safe shelter
  • Remain sheltered for 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder.

To help you recall this important rule of thumb, Environment Canada and SIRC are providing wallet-sized business cards with the 30-30 rule on them along with some lightning safety tips.  Print out and distribute these wallet sized lightning safety cards.

... Print cards »

Lightning Safety Tips

  • If Caught In A Level Field Far From Shelter and you feel your hair stand on end lightning may be about to hit you. Crouch on the ground immediately, with feet together, placing your hands on your knees and bending forward. Don't lie flat.

  • Keep A Safe Distance From Tall Objects, such as trees, hilltops and telephone poles.

  • Stay Away From Objects That Conduct Electricity, such as golf clubs, metal fences, bicycles and fishing rods.

  • If You Are In A Group In The Open, spread out, keeping several metres apart.

High Risk Summer Sports

Lightning-related deaths and injuries by sport or outdoor activity as a percentage of all activities (indoor & outdoor) studied, 1986-2005

Note: activities not displayed in this graph include work, home, other and unknown

Outdoor recreation pursuits account for over 70% of victims killed and over 62% of injuries, with camping and hiking being the most common activity.

... View Larger Image »

Camping Safety

Of the approximately 10,000 thunderstorms that occur in Ontario on average each year, only about 1% are "severe" and produce damage or injury.

Thunderstorms are a normal part of life in Ontario, but the severe thunderstorms that cause damage are relatively rare. The greatest risk posed by thunderstorms is the danger of being struck by lightning.

... Read more »

Lightning Safety PolicyLightning

Few athletic training programs have written policies on lightning safety, and it is not uncommon for a lightning safety policy to be overlooked in the development of an athletic training policy manual. The need for athletic trainers to develop a policy on lightning safety is compelling: lightning kills more people directly each year than any other weather phenomenon. The purpose of this paper is to present a model policy on lightning safety for athletic trainers.

... Read more »

Predicting Weather

Knowing the weather forecast in advance is very important for the sport community.  As technology in weather prediction becomes more advanced people can expect weather forecasts and products to become more consistent in quality, more comprehensive in detail and more accessible both in terms of delivery and presentation. This article discusses the new technologies in use for weather forecasting and prediction.

... Read more »

Lightning2When Lightning Strikes

Lightning is an enormous and widespread danger to the physically active population, due in part to the prevalence of thunderstorms in the afternoon to early evening during the late spring to early fall and societal trend toward outdoor activities.  Over the past century, lightning has consistently been one of the top three causes of weather related death in the United States. It kills approximately 100 people and injures hundreds more each year.

... Read more »

Lightning Strikes Sport

Stories of lightning strikes have been in the news lately almost daily. With the summer storm season underway lightning strikes have resulted in serious injury and even death.

News from SIRC

SIRC Partners with Environment Canada
SIRC announces that they will provide severe weather awareness information with the assistance of the Meteorological Service of Canada for the sporting community

Lightning Safety Cards
SIRC provides, in conjunction with Environment Canada, lightning information and wallet-sized lightning safety cards to the sporting community.

... Read more »

SIRC Seminar Series

Severe Weather Watch and Sports
Speaker: Etienne Gregoire, Environment Canada
Location: SIRC
Date: September 11, 2007

Time: 9am - 11am
Click Here for more information and to register.

... Read more »

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