Storm Event Safety & Event Evacuation

13/01/15, Sarah Campbell


Have you got your Event Evacuation Plan in Place?

It’s been a windy few days and it’s going to get worse, storm Rachel is due to hit tomorrow putting the entire country on alert, however we are no strangers in the UK to wild and unpredictable weather so event oraganisers should always be prepared for the worst, no matter what season we are in.

Event organisers need an evacuation plan in place for when an event structure meets it’s maximum design wind loads, ask your supplier for details on wind and snow loading specific to the structure you have hired as every manufacturer will have different values.

Consider other weather hazards to ensure event safety.

  1. Be aware of rain and its effects on the ground and any anchorage
  2. Consider additional loads from pooling rainwater on a structure’s roof.
  3. Think about snow and the impact of additional snow load, structures should be heated to at least 12 degrees to the ridge to prevent a build up of snow.
  4. Lightning strikes (read more on lightning strikes below)

For complete piece of mind and total event safety make sure your event structure has been built according to allregulations and guidelines.

In the event of a lightning strike

Approximately 300,000 lightning strikes hit the ground in Britain each year with 30 percent of reported lightning strikes causing severe damage. Each year 30 to 60 people are recorded as being struck by lightning, 3 of whom on average die.

Should the risks associated with temporary structures be unacceptable, several routes to reducing the risk are possible. Temporary evacuation of the structure to a safe place might be possible. Or physical protection measures might sufficiently lower the risk to the occupants of the structure.

Inside a temporary structure people are unlikely to suffer a direct strike, but are at risk of the following types of strike:-

Contact Voltage:- A person in or outside a structure that is struck by lightning who is in contact with a conductor (either part of a lightning protection system, or that is inadvertently conducting the lightning strike) may (depending on their contact with earth) suffer a contact voltage.

Side Flash :- Lightning involves high voltages that can arc or flash across large air gaps. A person near a conductor carrying a lightning strike either inside or outside a structure may suffer a side flash.

Step Voltage:- A person standing on the ground within about 3m of a lightning strike can have such a large voltage across their two feet that a potentially fatal current can flo

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