Recommendations for lightning protection in sport Academic Article uri icon


  • Lightning is an important cause of weather-related morbidity and mortality and is often underrated. There has been an increase in the proportion of casualties occurring during outdoor sport and recreational activities over recent years. However, in Australia, there is a deficiency in recommendations for lightning safety at sporting events. Organisers of sporting events should have a lightning safety policy that includes a designated weather watcher with the authority to stop or postpone the event, a specific chain of command, and designated safe areas. Suspension and resumption of play should follow the "30/30" rule: play should stop when the flash-to-bang count is 30 seconds, and should not resume until 30 minutes after the last lightning. At events with large crowds, additional time should be allowed for evacuating all people to safe areas.

publication date

  • July 2002