March 8, 2013
Quick note to advise of a change and remind of a couple best practices:
This week the OSI Board agreed to my suggested change to the term limits for the Officials Chair. The standing rule was written making the Officials Chair's term three years with two terms maximum. I believe a two year term with three terms maximum will be easier on future Officials Chairs and proposed this language change. The maximum amount of time a person can serve remains the same, six years, but now a person has the opportunity to step away at two different earlier points if desired.
I was recently advised of a meet where the referee was under a lot of stress, as can sometimes happen at big meets, and allegedly raised his voice to another volunteer (the term used was “yelled”) and I would like to remind all of a couple of things. First, these are swim meets folks, don't stress out over it. Second, it is never okay for a referee, or any other official for that matter, to speak to another person in an unreasonable tone. Enough said about that.
The collaboration between deck referee (DR) and starter was also recently brought up and I was asked to mention the strict procedure we are suppose to be using when reporting a potential false start. Once a potential false start is witnessed by either the DR or starter, that official will circle on the heat sheet the lane where the infraction took place. The next step is the responsibility of the starter; after viewing what s/he believes to be a false start, the DR does nothing until approached by the starter. If the starter does not approach the DR there has been no false start. If the starter believes a false start has taken place, after circling the lane on the heat sheet, the starter approaches the DR and says “I have a potential.” Both parties hold out their heat sheets and compare notes; if both have circled the same lane a false start has been confirmed, and if they have not circled the same lane, or if the referee responds “I have nothing” or something similar, there was no false start. Never should the DR initiate the false start conversation, and never may the confirmation be verbal. Of course after the confirmation process has played out you may discuss what you saw. When you are assigned as a starter or DR its never a bad idea to discuss this process with your partner before the first rotation as a reminder.
That's it for now; next up, long course season.
See you on deck!