Sports fields are large, open areas where people are often the tallest objects. Metal bleachers, fences, light poles and goal posts attract lightning. When lightning hits these objects, the charge travels along the object, potentially injuring anyone in contact with the metal. Lightning can bounce off any of these objects and strike people nearby.
Schools, athletic programs, day care centers, and summer camps, as well as coaches, referees and parents participating in field events need to understand the dangers of lightning. They should be prepared to suspend games and move the players and spectators inside nearby buildings or into cars and buses until the storm threat passes.