Be Alert for Lightning Warnings

September 10, 2010 News

During our latest thunderstorm many of you may have heard a loud siren wailing and seen strobe lights flashing for close to the entire length of the storm. Recently, a new lightning detection system has been installed on campus. This system scans the air around campus for electric particles.

If there are enough particles within a two-mile radius to have a possible lightning strike, then the system will sound the alert. The system will begin the alert with one long blast. During the alert, a strobe light will continue flashing until the air is clear of particles for a certain period. Once the area is clear, the alarm with give an all-clear by sounding three short blasts.

Many students do not know what to think of the new system. Some think that it is a good idea to have a lightning-warning system, but others are not so sure about the new system. During the last storm, the alarm continued for quite a while after the sky was empty and there was not any sign of thunder let alone lightning.

One of the upsides of the new alarm is that it will be the lightning detector for all outdoor events.

Coaches or event coordinators will be able to continue with their activities until the system goes off.

This will give coaches and administrators an easier time of determining when their event should be moved indoors or canceled. “The guesswork has been removed from the equation, leaving a safer environment,” said Lauren Murray, the advisor for Hillel@Rollins.

“We had to cancel one of our events last year, our Purim Carnival for Haiti, right in the middle of it, because of stormy conditions! Hopefully this new system will prevent this unfortunate occurrence from happening again.”

About Ed Leffler

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