No team in the NFL has played more home games over the past 6 seasons than the New England Patriots, playing 11 or 12 games each of those seasons including playoffs and pre-season. While that’s great news for fans, it only intensifies the operational toll being taken on the event management team and demands a precise operations strategy.
- The Challenge: How to effectively incorporate a predictive and automated weather operations strategy for field management and lightning storm protocols across management teams, field crews, stadium operations, parking, and groundskeeping.
- The Numbers: Gillette Stadium measures in at 1.9 million square feet that needs to be managed along with 65,000 attendees during each game.
- The Hero: Jason Stone, Senior Director of Operations at Kraft Sports & Entertainment.
Before ClimaCell, the team was dealing with a number of operational challenges, including field management specific to water saturation and fan safety during lightning storms.
A few highlights from The New England Patriots using ClimaCell to date include:
With volatile weather all year in Foxborough, managing field conditions is a constant challenge including field saturation and upkeep.
Solution: The Patriots implemented ClimaCell to sync incoming weather conditions with field management protocols to know the best time to program their smart water system, when to paint the field, and how to better plan for snow.
When there’s risk of lightning at Gillette Stadium, the operations team needs to set up a 10 mile radius around the stadium and alert game officials about lightning in the area. If the lightning gets as close as 5 miles, officials are updated again as the game may need to be temporarily paused. Alerts are also critical for fan safety as people need to know when and if they’re at risk.
Solution: The Patriots implemented ClimaCell's hyperlocal weather technology to know exactly where lightning would be and when. They were then able to take that information, turn it into insights and apply actionable operational protocols. Now, when lightning is 5 or 10 miles away, action plans are automatically put into motion across all necessary internal teams.
“If lightning is going to touch down on the property, we need to know about the threat in advance – we need to get everyone to sheltered areas so that they are protected from the elements. ClimaCell’s tool tells us when to expect a weather event and when it will pass us.”
– Jason Stone, Senior Director of Operations, Kraft Sports and Entertainment