Home Sanctions WOWSA Rules & Regulations WOWSA 2.0 – Officials and Their Duties

WOWSA 2.0 – Officials and Their Duties

WOWSA 2.1 – The following officials can be utilized during a WOWSA-sanctioned event. Some individuals may fulfill dual roles during an event, and some official positions may not be necessary in some events:

  • Referee
  • Starter
  • Timekeeper
  • Safety Officer
  • Medical Officer
  • Course Officer
  • Announcer
  • Recorder
  • Observer

WOWSA 2.1 – The Referee shall have full control and authority over all officials and shall approve their assignments and instruct them regarding all special features or regulations related to the competition. The Referee shall enforce all the rules and decisions of the event and WOWSA where applicable and shall decide all questions and issues relating to the actual conduct of the competition, the final settlement of which is not otherwise covered by this document or the established rules of the event. In the event, an unusual or unprecedented situation or happening occurs during an event, the Referee may refer the situation to the WOWSA Head Referee (Steven Munatones for the 2013 calendar year).

WOWSA 2.2 – The Referee shall have authority to intervene in the competition at any stage to ensure that rules, policies, procedures, and protocols are observed.

WOWSA 2.3 – In the case of hazardous or questionable conditions occur or appear to interrupt the event or jeopardize the safety of the swimmers, volunteers or officials, in conjunction with the Safety Officer, the Referee may stop, postpone or modify the event.

WOWSA 2.4 – The Referee shall adjudicate all protests related to the event, either in progress or after the event is completed. The Referee has the authority to intervene in the event at any stage to ensure that rules are observed.

WOWSA 2.5 – The Referee may disqualify any swimmer for any violation of the rules that he observes or which are reported to him by other authorized officials who observes the infraction. The infraction must be directly observed by the officials and must be immediately documented. Upon exit from the water, the athlete must be verbally informed of the reasons for the infraction, warning or disqualification.

WOWSA 2.6 – The Referee ensures that all necessary officials for the conduct of the event are at their respective posts. He may appoint substitutes for those who are absent, incapable of acting, or found to be inefficient or inexperienced. He may appoint additional officials if or when necessary.

WOWSA 2.7 – The Starter shall start each race at the specified time with an air horn, whistle, or other suitable device (including a loud voice) unless there is a delay as approved by the Referee. The Starter can fulfill other roles or responsibilities after the start of the race has safely been executed.

WOWSA 2.8 – The Timekeeper shall work with the timing company to assure official and accurate times are recorded for each athlete and relay. In the case of a solo swim, the Timekeeper shall keep at least 2 watches running from start to finish and should request an independent volunteer also confirm the official start and finish time.

WOWSA 2.9 – The Timekeeper shall conduct a time check to allow all related personnel to synchronize their timing systems and watches with the official running clocks before the start.

WOWSA 2.10 – The Timekeeper shall confirm the records and official times and placing after the race, relay or solo swim.

WOWSA 2.11 – The Safety Officer shall be responsible to the Referee and athletes for all aspects of safety related to the conduct of the competition.

WOWSA 2.12 – The Safety Officer shall check that the entire course, with special regard to the start, transition and finish areas, and any possible hazardous spots, are safe, suitable, and free of any obstruction.

WOWSA 2.13 – The Safety Officer shall be responsible for ensuring that a sufficient number of powered safety craft and a sufficient number of medical personnel are available on the water and on land during the event.

WOWSA 2.14 – The Safety Officer shall provide information on the water temperatures, water conditions, potential marine hazards and tidal flow / currents on the course to the swimmers. This information shall be recorded in the Sanctioning Event Documentation or Observer Report for solo swims and relays.

WOWSA 2.15 – The Safety Officer in conjunction with the Medical Officer and Referee advises if conditions are unsuitable for staging the event and make recommendations for the modification of the course or the manner in which the event is conducted, if necessary.

WOWSA 2.16 – The Safety Officer shall prepare a comprehensive Safety Document that documents and educates all relevant staff and volunteers of myriad contingencies and emergency situations that may occur. This Safety Document shall serve as a guideline to ensure proper execution of safety procedures by staff and volunteers.

WOWSA 2.17 – The Medical Officer shall be responsible to the Referee for all medical aspects related to the event and competitors.

WOWSA 2.18 – The Medical Officer in conjunction with the Safety Officer, shall advise the Referee if conditions are unsuitable for staging the event and make recommendations for the modification of the course or the manner in which the competition is conducted, if necessary.

WOWSA 2.19 – The Medical Officer shall inform the local medical facilities of the nature of the event and ensure that any injuries are attended to and all casualties can be evacuated to medical facilities at the earliest opportunity.

WOWSA 2.20 – The Course Officer shall be responsible to the Referee for the correct marking of the course, turn buoys and intermediate stages. The Course Officer shall use Global Positioning Satellite technology and record the information in the Sanctioning Event Documentation or Observer Reports for solo swims and relays.

WOWSA 2.21 – The Course Officer shall ensure the start and finish areas are correctly marked and all equipment has been correctly installed and, where applicable, is in working order.

WOWSA 2.22 – The Course Officer shall endeavor to use Turn Buoys and Guide Buoys of different colors, sizes and shapes on the course.

WOWSA 2.23 – The Course Officer shall ensure each competitor is identified correctly with their race number (on the shoulders, back of hands or back or swim cap, and/or by their kayaker or escort boat).

WOWSA 2.24 – The Course Officer shall be certain all swimmers are present, in the assembly area, at the required time prior to the start for the pre-race instructions.

WOWSA 2.25 – The Course Officer shall keep swimmers and officials informed of the time remaining before the start at suitable intervals until the last five minutes, during which one-minute warnings shall be given.

WOWSA 2.26 – The Recorder shall record withdrawals (due to injuries, fatigue or voluntarily stopping) from the event, inform the Referee and Safety Officer, and enter the results and reasons on official forms including scoring for team awards as appropriate.

WOWSA 2.27 – The Recorder shall report any violations by the athletes to the Referee on a signed document detailing the rule infringement. Either the Referee or the Recorder shall inform the athlete(s) of the rule infringement.

WOWSA 2.28 – The Observer shall be responsible for documenting the event, solo swim or relay and completing the Observer Report. The Observer shall witness the event, solo swimmer or relay members and document the activities as detailed as possible. The Observer shall also be responsible for the adjudication of the rules.

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