Inclement weather

Technical questions regarding Openings, Middlegames, Endings etc.
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Alex Holowczak
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Inclement weather

Post by Alex Holowczak » Thu Dec 17, 2009 10:22 pm

A scenario tonight:

Birmingham League Division 5: Warley Quinborne v Boldmere St. Michael's cancelled, because of the weather.

Birmingham League Division 2: Warley Quinborne v Boldmere St. Michael's went ahead as planned, all 6 opposition players turned up in good time.

How on Earth can the Division 5 side claim the weather is bad if the Division 2 side still turn up anyway? :shock:

Apparently, we're not even going to make the claim of winning by default. :shock:

For the record, there was a sprinkling for half an hour at about 2pm. It's 30F (feels like 19F with the wind, Ubuntu tells me) at the moment in Birmingham, but there's no snow or ice on the ground at all.

If games like this are going to be called off, maybe we should stop scheduling League matches from December to February?

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Carl Hibbard
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Carl Hibbard » Thu Dec 17, 2009 10:48 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:If games like this are going to be called off, maybe we should stop scheduling League matches from December to February?
Nice (but cold...) here but then if Evesham gets snow the weather everywhere is bad :)
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John Upham
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by John Upham » Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:43 pm

This is symptomatic of a gradual Health & Safety (combined with the dreadful PC) attitude that infects this country. I played table tennis tonight, won all of my games, came straight back, fired up my Golf GTI rally car and went out for some fun. There were people in 4WD vehicles driving as though conditions were tough. It is a sad state of affairs. For me ( I do work from home ) it is good weather not bad!
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Peter Rhodes
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Peter Rhodes » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:38 am

Don't motoring organisations issue travel advisories ?

Would it be reasonable that if an advisory for your area is issued - "do not travel unless absolutely necessary" etc - then that would be an acceptable reason ?

I haven't done any research as to the different level of advisory notices and from what organisations they come from, and where to check for this information etc etc.

But it doesn't seem like rocket science to me to set out a clear procedure for when a match should be cancelled due to the weather, and when it should not.

Of course, no action will be taken to standardise anything because as I've said before - many of the people in the chess world who push themselves forwards onto the committees that are able to make these kind of decisions are usually volunteering themselves way past their pay-grade.
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Mick Norris
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Mick Norris » Fri Dec 18, 2009 9:24 am

We tend not to make hard and fast rules because conditions can vary

We had a night last year where one of our (Bury) teams couldn't get to Stockport - they complained because a team arrived from Bolton to play another Stockport team - in my part of Bolton, I couldn't have travelled even in my 4x4 because the roads were full of cars stuck and I couldn't get out of Harwood

Of course, being southern (Manchester) softies, Stockport don't travel to the north of Manchester unless the sun is shining :D
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Fri Dec 18, 2009 11:28 am

"Of course, being southern (Manchester) softies, Stockport don't travel to the north of Manchester unless the sun is shining"

Presumably they never play then...

The snow isn't consistent. I cannot get down my road this morning, but from the rear window* of the house I can see traffic in the distance hurtling down the main road. Meanwhile at work, when I rang up, they said "there's no snow here."

* Not quite as exciting as 'Rear Window' starring James Stewart.
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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:54 pm

I got to London Bridge at 9:50 this morning, and didn't get a train to East Croydon until 11:00. Apparently a train did leave for Tattenham Corner at about 10:25, but the information didn't come up on the noticeboard.

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Re: Inclement weather

Post by John Upham » Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:50 pm

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Alex Holowczak
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Dec 18, 2009 4:27 pm

Peter Rhodes wrote: But it doesn't seem like rocket science to me to set out a clear procedure for when a match should be cancelled due to the weather, and when it should not.
Rule 6.2 of the Birmingham & District League Competition Rules (irrelevant parts omitted, or replaced with "..."):

"Whenever it may become necessary to request the alteration of a fixture date as a result of ... bad weather conditions ... the team making the request shall seek the agreement of the opposing team."

So for us, the captain probably agreed. The rule continues:

"If such agreement be refused, it may apply to the Honorary General Secretary to the League for permission to alter the said date, whereupon the Honorary General Secretary may, after considering the circumstances of the case, either grant or refuse the application ..."

The latter rule is far more open to interpretation than I'd like it to be.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Dec 18, 2009 5:24 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:Rule 6.2 of the Birmingham & District League Competition Rules (irrelevant parts omitted, or replaced with "..."):

"Whenever it may become necessary to request the alteration of a fixture date as a result of ... bad weather conditions ... the team making the request shall seek the agreement of the opposing team."

So for us, the captain probably agreed. The rule continues:

"If such agreement be refused, it may apply to the Honorary General Secretary to the League for permission to alter the said date, whereupon the Honorary General Secretary may, after considering the circumstances of the case, either grant or refuse the application ..."

The latter rule is far more open to interpretation than I'd like it to be.
Berks League 3(b)

(b) Once 28 days have elapsed since the fixtures meeting , no matches shall be
postponed without the agreement of both captains.

Berks League 3(d)

(d) Where, because of severe road conditions ,fog, ice, snow or floods a match cannot be
played, rule 3 (b) shall be waived. Irrespective of the conditions , a match is deemed
playable if at least three members of each team be present.

This rule allows one club to decide not to travel (or to get a postponement if they travel but don't arrive)

Severe road conditions is a recent addition to cover traffic congestion (many matches involve the M4 or A329(M)). The postponement rule was used back in February during the bad weather week. I suppose the rule as framed could lead to disputes if the existence of bad traffic or weather was disputed. In practice go/no go decisions on matches are made in a fairly amicable manner.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Inclement weather

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Dec 18, 2009 7:53 pm

Well, there was a problem in the Birmingham League... This is the story as I've heard it. I think I'm at liberty to mention it, given the situation has now been resolved.

Warley Quinborne v Tamworth & District, Birmingham & District League Division 2.

Tamworth & District didn't turn up, but called about 45 minutes before the off to say they couldn't get there. The weather wasn't bad at all, it was still 50 degrees or so, no rain or anything. There was, however, a big accident that closed J1 of the M5. Given that when one road is closed in the West Midlands the entire area grinds to a standstill, sure enough, at about 4pm, everywhere was blocked. J2 of the M5 through to J7/9 of the M6 was almost gridlocked. I was caught up in this, in fact, as I caught a train to Sandwell & Dudley, and was waiting for a bus on the A4034, which joins Oldbury and West Bromwich - I was waiting for an hour, and the one I wanted didn't arrive. In the end, I had a three-mile uphill walk (fun... :( ). Anyway, I got home in time to eat, and get out again for chess (I wasn't playing in this match, but I went along anyway). The traffic had gone by 7pm; I set out at 7pm and arrived earlier than the 7:30pm start. Travel reports described the traffic as "easing back to normal" on the radio.

Tamworth & District are a bit distant for the Birmingham League. The rule says 15 miles "as the crow flies" from Birmingham City Centre, but unfortunately, none of the people who built roads were crows, so it's actually about a 25 mile trip to get to the centre of Birmingham, plus a bit to get to Warley Quinborne. They would have probably passed through the M6, then up to J2 of the M5, then the A4123 to the venue. My route included the A4123 bit, which had no traffic. I could see that traffic on the motorway was passing freely. The entire Warley Quinborne team turned up, and had to be told that the match was cancelled as they arrived.

The Warley Quinborne captain made a protest, on the basis that the roads were OK. Whether the protest was sporting or not is another debate, but once you decided to protest, it should have been upheld. OK, Tamworth would have been slightly late, but this is hardly a new experience for them, due to their location. Clubs are used to having to wait for them, anyway. The Honorary General Secretary said that the match had to be replayed, though. The fallout was that the WQ captain, who also happened to be the Division 1-3 Results secretary, resigned on principle. Tamworth chose to forfeit the match anyway, 6-0, presumably as their way of protesting about the whole saga. I can imagine something like "Well if that's going to be their attitude, we don't want to play them" crossing their minds.

This is exactly why the rules can't be open to interpretation, and should say that if scenario x happens, decision y is made. Then everyone knows where they stand, and we don't have a representative (who does a very good job) resigning, and clubs falling out with one-another.

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