Four Golfers Injured by Nearby Lightning Strike at Big Fish Golf Course
By Joe Morey
Four persons from a southern Wisconsin family were injured as the result of a nearby lightning strike while golfing on Big Fish Golf Course Tuesday, Aug. 10.
According to a press release from the Sawyer County Sheriff’s Department, they had received a 911 call at 11:26 am reporting multiple people being struck by lightning at the Big Fish Golf Course in the Town of Hayward. Sawyer County Deputies, Sawyer County EMS, Wisconsin State Patrol, LCO Police, LCO Tribal Wardens, Town of Hayward Police and the Hayward Fire Department responded to the call.
“The four were found alert, conscious and were transported by ambulances to a local hospital,” the Sheriff’s Department reported.
According to the Hayward Area Memorial Hospital, as of late Tuesday afternoon, two of the persons were released and two were still being treated at the hospital.
Golfers at the course on Hole #7 and employees at Mulligan’s Restaurant within the course all reported seeing the lightning bolt strike just off the course to the south and east of Hole #6 close to Hwy K. The four injured golfers were on Hole #5.
All the witnesses reported hearing an electrical ripping sound followed by a loud boom and flash which resulted in a lot of smoke coming from the area of the strike. People on the LCO Reservation said they heard the boom and experienced few second power outages as far away as the LCO School.
Witnesses also reported there was no sign of an incoming storm and that it hadn't even started raining yet on the course. According to Radar, a storm was developing just to the north and east of the course when the lightning strike occurred.
View from first hole tee box. Strike occurred to the right of the two distant houses straight ahead while the four golfers were on the far hole (#5) at left in the photo.