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The strike could have ended a lot worse

A game of golf got an extra dose of excitement when a lightning strike injured six people at a PGA Tour Championship, sending them to the hospital.

The strike happened during the third round on Saturday of the championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia.

Play was suspended for the remainder of the day after the fans were struck and would resume Sunday.

Five fans in attendance were taken to nearby hospitals for treatment while the sixth had their injuries taken care of at the scene.

The actual cause of the injuries was from debris after the lightning bolt struck a tree near the 16th hole.

Keeping spectators safe

“The safety and well-being of our fans and players is our highest priority, and we were with those being treated until they were released from area hospitals,” the PGA Tour said in a statement. “We are deeply grateful that the injuries were not more serious, and we’re proud of the collective efforts of the on-site team to quickly care for our fans during this frightening incident.”

Lightning isn’t something to be messed with. Whenever lightning can be seen or thunder can be heard, it’s best to follow the guidelines of the National Weather Service and get indoors.

“Forecasting the weather, the safety that goes along with it, that is critical to us,” said Tyler Dennis, the PGA TOUR’s Chief of Operations. “We have a lot of scenarios throughout the year where … there’s a very high degree of certainty that there will be storms coming. And there’s a lot of other days when we look at it and we see, as it was today — I believe it was a 50-60% percent chance of storms from 3:00 to 6:00 this afternoon — and we just have to evaluate it and make our best decision when we make the schedule.

The Tour Championship did end up resuming play the next day where it saw Rory McIlroy take home the top prize at 8/1 odds.

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