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Adverse weather incident (with You Tube link)

All of our written safety management systems include a reference to weather. It is a standard inclusion and we make no separation in this principal, even for indoor events as adverse weather can affect journeys, arrival times as well as external conditions which might have a bearing on safety.

We recently (June 2012) worked with MONSTER EVENTS (the events wing of the energy drinks people) at a motor sports event in Clermont-Ferrand, France. The site is adjacent to the remnants of former volcanos (mountains) and as such, it is reasonable to expect ‘a cloud dump’ (serious rain) during late afternoons in summer.

What happened was actually more serious than that. First it was electrical storm, accompanied by torrential rain which created several inches of standing water over the area, quickly followed by hail, some 2.5 cm diameter and some of the hail was conjoined (up to 3 stuck together). It killed birds in flight and created massively expensive damage to the bodywork of vehicles.

What is the point of this anecdote? Well, all agreed, planned and documented safety arrangements fell smoothly into place. Firstly, as a team, we stopped the motor sport, then people took cover under shelters which were (electrically) earthed and also protected them from the hail. We must confess though, we did not anticipate such monumental hail ‘stones’ and this did not feature in up to the minute local forecasts which we were following closely.

The event had to be abandoned for the day but our clients did a terrific job in providing music and free MONSTER ENERGY drinks for those still about. The event resumed the following day after quite a lot of work in removing large pools of standing water from the track.

 

What did it look like? You might like to check out a short video on You Tube.