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View and/or Download the PDF version: 5 Diamonds Severe Weather Policy

SEVERE WEATHER STATEMENT

It is the mission of Five Diamonds Inc. to ensure that weather, specifically ice, snow, fog and heat, and the occurrence of severe weather, specifically severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, lightning and flash flood events, minimally impact players, coaches, umpires and families at Five Diamonds Complex located in Waukesha, WI, on approximately 40 acres south of Les Paul Parkway (Highway 59/164) and west of Milky Way Road. Photos and descriptions of the physical property are found in Appendix B within this policy.

 

Overall Goal

– This policy identifies possible weather threats at Five Diamonds Complex and supplies steps to minimize or eliminate their impact to players, coaches, umpires and families and any other person on Five Diamonds property at the time of or before a severe weather event.

 

SEVERE WEATHER RESPONSIBILITY

In the event of severe weather approaching Five Diamonds Complex, the responsibility to assess and execute this plan will fall primarily to the General Manager or any person assigned primary duties. The steps and decisions will be made by the General Manager or person assigned primary duties. Primary duties are assigned by the General Manager and/ or Owners of Five Diamonds, Inc.

Primary duties are as follows:

 

SEVERE WEATHER THREATS

凯发体育网址Five Diamonds Complex is used by teams for practice and games from March through October in a typical calendar year.

凯发体育网址During this time frame, here are list of weather threats:

1) Ice and Snow: Typically ice and snow would be a possible issue in March and April. In October, ice and snow are very uncommon but possible. The most common appearance would be of ice and black ice in the morning hours on the property in March, April and October. Snow of any significance, more than a dusting, would likely cause poor playing conditions and cancellation of practices and games. Nonetheless, any amount of ice or snow needs treatment or removal.

2) Fog: Five Diamonds Complex is located on former farmland with retention ponds and swamps nearby. The property sits in a low spot with hills to the south and east. This sheltered location makes the property susceptible to morning fog. Limited visibilities and the inability to track a white baseball, moving at a high rate of speed, due to fog endanger players and spectators.

凯发体育网址3) Rain: A steady soaking rain lasting hours or bursts of heavy downpours associated with thunderstorms can render fields unplayable and dangerous.

凯发体育网址4) Lightning: Five Diamonds Complex is located in an open field with tall high voltage electric lines on the east end of the property. Six of the fields have chain link fences that surround most of the fields, if not all, and go into the dugouts. Six of the fields also have tall metal lights for night games. The property is very exposed to the dangers of lightning.

5) Severe Thunderstorms: Thunderstorms are possible at all hours of the day but are most common between the hours of 3pm and 7pm. A severe thunderstorm, as defined by the National Weather Service (NWS), is a thunderstorm with winds in excess of 58mph, large hail in excess of 1” and/ or a tornado. If any of those three are possible, a Severe Thunderstorm Warning is issued. If a tornado is imminent or has been seen by trained severe weather spotters, a Tornado Warning is issued.

6) Heat: Intense heat combined with humidity and sunshine can create dangerous conditions. The most likely time is from late morning through the evening with the young and elderly most susceptible to the heat. Sunburn, dehydration, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke are the dangers of intense heat and humidity.

 

WEATHER AND SEVERE WEATHER TERMS AND DEFINITIONS

1) Ice and Snow: Ice most often happens without official advisories. Ice accumulation needs to be manually inspected when temperatures are forecast to be below or around freezing. However, snow is a highly publicized weather event in Wisconsin. As mentioned, even an inch of snow can render fields unplayable. Here are terms used by the National Weather Service (NWS) and media for snow and winter weather.

A. Winter Storm Warning:凯发体育网址 Snow of 6 inches or more in 12 hours or less or snow of 8 inches or more in 24 hours or less is forecast. The snow may mix with freezing rain and sleet.

B. Blizzard Warning:凯发体育网址 Snow and/or blowing snow and 35 mph winds reducing visibilities for 3 hours or more.

C. Winter Weather Advisory:凯发体育网址 3-6” of snow forecast in 12 hours or less. Snow may mix with freezing rain and sleet.

 

2) Fog: Fog is most common in the morning hours. If visibility is greatly reduced a Dense Fog Advisory may be issued by the National Weather Service (NWS).

凯发体育网址A. Dense Fog Advisory: Visibilities ¼ mile or less for at least 3 hours.

 

凯发体育网址3) Rain: Rain is also a highly publicized event. It may not require an official advisory, especially in a long duration light, steady rain event. But, in the event of flooding, the following terms may be used by the National Weather Service (NWS):

 

A. Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory:凯发体育网址 Flooding that may create an inconvenience within the next 24 hours.

B. Flash Flood Warning: Flooding that causes a threat to life and property within 6 hours of causative event.

C. Flood Warning: Flooding that causes a threat to life and property within 6 to 12 hours of causative event.

 

4) Lightning: This is the most likely cause for delays and the greatest threat to people at Five Diamonds Complex. By definition, all thunderstorms have lightning. There are no advisories for lightning, but if you can hear thunder, you can be struck by lightning.

凯发体育网址5) Severe Thunderstorms: In the event of severe thunderstorms, a highly publicized warning system already exists in many forms. Here are terms used by the National Weather Service (NWS) in regards to severe thunderstorms:

 

A. Severe Thunderstorm Watch: A Severe Thunderstorm Watch is issued when thunderstorms with winds over 58 mph and hail in excess of an inch are possible. The area impacted and time duration is included in the Watch.

B. Tornado Watch:凯发体育网址 A Tornado Watch is issued when thunderstorms with tornadoes are possible.

C. Severe Thunderstorm Warning: Thunderstorms with winds over 58mph and hail in excess of an inch are imminent or occurring within a designated area and time limit.

D. Tornado Warning: A tornado is on the ground or imminent with in a designated area and time limit.

 

6) Heat: Intense heat and heat waves impact Southern Wisconsin, periodically, from May through early September. If the risk of intense heat is significant, the National Weather Service (NWS) will issue advisories and/ or watches.

A. Heat Advisory:凯发体育网址 Issued when the Heat Index, a combination of heat and humidity, reaches 100°F or greater during the day. A Heat Advisory will also be issued, when the Heat Index reaches 95°F for 4 consecutive days.

B. Excessive Heat Warning: Issued when the Heat Index reaches 105°F during the day or 100°F for four consecutive days.

 

WEATHER AND SEVERE WEATHER GUIDELINES

These are the actions to take during one of the twelve identified weather threats defined above.

1) Winter Storm Warning: All games and practices cancelled for duration of warning. Five Diamonds will not re-open until all snow and ice are removed and fields are considered playable.

凯发体育网址2) Blizzard Warning: All games and practices cancelled for duration of warning. Five Diamonds will not re-open until all snow and ice are removed and fields are considered playable.

3) Winter Weather Advisory: All games and practices cancelled for duration of advisory. Five Diamonds will not re-open until all snow and ice are removed and fields are considered playable.

4) Dense Fog Advisory: All games and practices suspended for duration of advisory. Games and practices can start once the advisory ends or it is determined visibility has improved enough to allow for safe play. A test of this is to walk to fields 7 and 10, farthest from the snack bar. If the snack bar can be seen clearly from fields 7 and 10, visibility has improved enough for safe play.

5) Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory: All games and practices cancelled for duration of advisory. Five Diamonds will not re-open until fields are considered playable.

6) Flash Flood Warning: All games and practices cancelled for duration of warning. Five Diamonds will not re-open until fields are considered playable.

凯发体育网址7) Flood Warning: All games and practices cancelled for duration of warning. Five Diamonds will not re-open until fields are considered playable.

8) Lightning: All games and practices suspended immediately at the first clap of thunder or flash of lightning, whichever is witnessed first. Five Diamonds will not re-open until 30 minutes has passed since the last witnessed lightning bolt or clap of thunder. All fields and dugouts are evacuated immediately. Everyone is asked to go to their car. Automobiles are the safest and most readily available shelters against lightning. No one is allowed to stay out in the open. A shelter for employees and volunteers is the snack bar with all open windows/ serving windows closed.

9) Severe Thunderstorm Watch: Once a watch is posted, all coaches and umpires are to be informed that severe weather may impact games and practices. Play continues unless a Warning is issued or lightning/ thunder is witnessed.

10) Tornado Watch: Once a watch is posted, all coaches and umpires are to be informed that severe weather may impact games and practices. Play continues unless a warning is issued or lightning/ thunder is witnessed.

凯发体育网址11) Severe Thunderstorm Warning: All games and practices are suspended immediately upon warning. Everyone is asked to go to their car. No one is allowed to stay out in the open. A shelter for employees and volunteers is in the snack bar with all open windows/ serving windows closed.

12) Tornado Warning: All games and practices are cancelled immediately upon warning. The General Manager or person assigned primary duties calls Waukesha County Emergency Communications 262-446-5070 and requests a Sheriff’s Deputy to assist in evacuating the parking lot. Ask to have the right lane of east bound Highway 59/164 blocked and allow cars to exit eastbound on highway 59/164 from Five Diamonds Complex. Everyone is asked to go to their car and evacuate the Five Diamonds Complex, if there is enough time. If there is not enough time and a tornado is close and rapidly approaching, have people lay face down in ditches – the retention pond would be one such area. Lying face down in a ditch is not a guarantee of safety but is a better option than standing. No one is allowed to stay out in the open. The snack bar shelter for employees and volunteers is not a tornado rated shelter and cannot be recommended in the event of a Tornado. Employees and volunteers should follow recommendations stated earlier – evacuate, if there is time or lie face down in a ditch, if a tornado is imminent.

凯发体育网址13) Heat Advisory or Excessive Heat Warning: All people arriving at Five Diamonds need to be warned of the Heat Advisory or Excessive Heat Warning. All games and practices must be closely monitored for any sign of sunburn, dehydration, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. All teams must have a significant supply of cold water in the dugouts. All umpires must have cold water available. Ice packs and cold towels should in supply within the snack bar, if needed. Emergency numbers for ambulances should be posted in the snack bar to be used, if heat stroke or heat exhaustion is suspected. If players, umpires, coaches are succumbing to the heat, they must be removed from the game and actions taken to cool their body. If it becomes more than an isolated event, consideration should be taken to cancel or postpone all games. If games are postponed or cancelled, Five Diamonds Complex does not offer air conditioning. It is safer for people to find refuge in air conditioning off of the property. It is imperative that no person or pet remain in a vehicle during a Heat Advisory or Excessive Heat Warning.

 

HOW TO ALERT FOR WEATHER AND SEVERE WEATHER

It is imperative that Five Diamonds is aware of weather forecasts and rapidly changing weather. These are steps to gather weather information and distribute or alert for changes in the weather and possible impact from the fourteen identified weather threats and terms.

1) A NOAA Weather Radio should be located and operating in the snack bar, whenever there are games or practices at Five Diamonds Complex. The volume should be high enough for all employees and volunteers to hear an alert immediately. This radio should never be turned off and have battery backup. To do so threatens the ability of Five Diamonds to enact this Severe Weather Policy. It is recommended that a NOAA Weather Radio is bought that be customized for alerts based on the fourteen identified and only for Waukesha County. This reduces false alarms.

凯发体育网址2) It is recommended that all employees download a weather app to their smart phone or mobile device. There are many companies that offer this service for free or for a one-time charge. Alerts can be customized and sent immediately to their phone. This creates redundancy in the alerting stage and is not impacted by a loss of power.

凯发体育网址3) A radio or television with battery backup located and operated in the snack bar, whenever there are games or practices at Five Diamonds Complex. The volume should be high enough for all employees and volunteers to hear an alert immediately. The radio or television should never be turned off. To do so threatens the ability of Five Diamonds to enact this Severe Weather Policy. This creates a third level of redundancy with a battery backup if power is lost.

4) It is recommended that all employees download free or low cost radar apps to their smart phone or mobile device.

凯发体育网址5) It is recommended that all employees under go severe weather spotter training in order to understand basic radar imagery and be better able to anticipate severe weather when in fact no warnings have been issued by the National Weather Service (NWS).

6) It is recommended that an air or bull horn is purchased to notify all people on all fields of impending weather. One blow of the horn suspends games/ practices. Two successive blows of the horn, evacuate fields. Three successive blows of the horn, evacuate the grounds. One long five second blast, games and practices resume. All staff and volunteers should be trained on these signals and what they mean at the beginning of each season.

7) It is recommended that digital signs are purchased to communicate threats to the public. Have these mounted on the snack bar. They can notify the public of the specific delay with time estimate of delay. It can also include if people need to evacuate or leave the Five Diamonds Complex. The primary use of these signs is for communicating weather information.

凯发体育网址8) In addition, a simple color code could be used to communicate the state of play. A green, yellow and red policy can be applied for all clear, all play suspended and all play cancelled. All staff and volunteers should be trained on these signals and what they mean at the beginning of each season.

9) Post this policy in a protected, public place on the snack bar. Include Appendix A in the posting. Make it very clear to anyone on the property that there are guidelines to follow in regard to weather.

 

SUMMARY

Weather and severe weather that can impact Five Diamonds Complex has been defined. Responsibility has been assigned with terms and guidelines defined. This is an actionable plan to monitor, alert and evacuate based on severe weather. It is recommended that this policy is reviewed and tested at the beginning of every season. It is also recommended that a copy of this policy is given to all organizations and teams that use Five Diamonds Complex. They can also be given a copy of the severe weather chart below.

Evacuation of Five Diamonds Complex, in the event of a Tornado Warning, will be a difficult task. There is only one entrance/exit to a busy four lane divided highway (Highway 59/164). It is recommended that the owners of Five Diamonds, Inc. meet with the Waukesha Sheriff, City of Waukesha Police, Town of Waukesha Police, Waukesha County Emergency Management and Dispatch to discuss possible evacuation procedures in the event of a damaging thunderstorm or tornado. Nearly one thousand people may be at Five Diamonds Complex, at any given time, during a busy summer weekend. The large number of players/citizens should be recognized and given a priority by local law enforcement.

Additionally, not all severe or dangerous weather receives prior notification from the National Weather Service (NWS). It must be understood that not all severe weather gets a warning and not all non-severe weather is safe. If conditions at Five Diamonds are deemed unsafe by the General Manager or person assigned primary duties, even without a warning, take action to protect life and property using the steps defined. For example, a gust of wind tears a tarp in a dugout and whips it around endangering children and spectators, suspend game play until conditions improve and the tarp can be properly fastened. These are decisions that must be made using average intelligence to protect life and property. Another example is black ice or ice on a chilly morning must be removed before access to the grounds is granted.

凯发体育网址All recommendations are based on guidelines provided and promoted by FEMA, NOAA and the National Weather Service (NWS). More information can be reviewed using these links provided:

凯发体育网址Excessive Heat –

Lightning Safety –

凯发体育网址Tornado Safety –

FEMA Tornado Safety –

凯发体育网址FEMA Thunderstorm Safety –

FEMA Snow and Ice Safety –

 

 

Appendix “A”

Weather Threat

Guideline

Baseline Conditions to Resume

Winter Storm WarningAll games and practices cancelledAll snow and ice are removed and fields are determined playable
Blizzard WarningAll games and practices cancelledAll snow and ice are removed and fields are determined playable
Dense Fog AdvisoryAll games and practices postponed for duration of advisoryGames and practices resumeonce advisory ends or field 7 and 10 test applied
Flash Flood Warning, Flood Warning and Urban and SmallStream Flood AdvisoryAll games and practices postponed for duration of warning or advisoryGames and practices resume once advisory or warning ends and fields are determined playable
Severe Thunderstorm WarningPlay is suspended; everyone leaves for the safety of their car with the option to evacuate Five Diamonds ComplexGames and practices resume once warning ends and fields are determined playable
Tornado WarningPlay is suspended; everyone evacuates Five Diamonds ComplexGames and practices resume once warning ends and fields are determined playable
Lightning/ ThunderPlay is suspended; everyone leaves for the safety of their carPlay resumes 30 minutes after the last clap of thunder
Heat Advisory and Excessive Heat WarningConditions are closely monitored for suspension or cancellationIf games and practices are cancelled, they resume once advisory or warning ends
Minor Ice and Snow AccumulationAll games and practices suspendedAll snow and ice are removed and fields are determined playable