Arlington Southwest Little League, thanks in large part to our partners, has taken the next step in ensuring the safety of our families while at the ballpark. Many of us suffered through the Spring of 2015, when over 40% of all games scheduled were delayed/cancelled/rescheduled due to inclement weather. The single biggest issue surrounding the weather: when to make the decision to vacate the playing fields and what technology to use to help make that decision. We were one of the first leagues to come up with a written and published protocol so that our members would know exactly what our criteria was for inclement weather.
We now take the next step, with the installation of the Thor Guard Integrated lightning prediction and warning system.
What is it?
Thor Guard is a proactive lightning warning system—in other words, it measures variables to determine the possibility of lightning, not the detection of lightning that has already struck. It measures the electrostatic build-up and changes in the atmosphere and compares this information to their database containing over 100,000 hours of historical thunderstorm activity. When the system reaches a preset level of red alert, a horn system is automatically activated (not subject to human interpretation) and all areas are cleared. The system is designed to give eight to eighteen minutes of advanced warning of imminent lightning activity. As weather conditions improve, the horn system is activated once again (three 5 second blasts of the horn).
How is it controlled/monitored?
It is all computer controlled and activated. It completely removes subjective decision making and replaces same with proven scientific equipment.
Who uses Thor Guard?
Over 1000 universities/athletic complexes across the globe use this system. The PGA Tour and the NFL both use the system. Locally, UTA and the City of Arlington have these units installed as well.
Who pays for this technology?
Arlington Southwest Little League totes the entire bill for the system, to include quarterly maintenance of all equipment. All equipment belongs to the league. The partners of the league make this possible.
Will we have access to this information?
Thor Guard has a mobile app for all iphones, ipads, Android phones or tablets. It will be centrally managed on our website as well. You will not need any other weather app—just point your device’s web browser to the web link provided for a quick, concise weather tool to see exactly what this system is seeing, for coverage at MLK, where you actually need it.
Because this is about so much more than just baseball…