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Safety - National Weather Advisory


The Jr. Colt Football program follows MSHSAA guidelines related to practices/games during hot weather. Please see the guidelines below:


Note: It is recommended that MSHSAA member host schools develop an emergency action plan for heat-related and injury situations at all athletic venues.

I. The National Weather Bureau, on its radio station, broadcasts an hourly heat index reading. It is strongly recommended that all schools use this service to make judgments about athletic contests. Basically, precautionary measures should be taken when the heat index is between 95 and 105 degrees. Over 105 degree heat index indicates a significant danger level (see Appendix G).

A. The following procedures should be followed for athletic contests scheduled during the day in hot weather:

1. The National Weather Service, that is broadcast every hour, should be checked at 1:00 p.m. on the day before a game, as well as one hour before the scheduled start of the contest.

2.If heat index is stated between 95 and 105 degrees, plans should be implemented to alter game conditions for both schools.

3.If heat index is stated over 105 degrees, plans to postpone or reschedule athletic contest should be implemented (both schools).

B. The following procedures should be followed for athletic contests scheduled during the evening in hot weather:

1.The National Weather Service, that is broadcast every hour, should be checked three (3) hours before
schedule contest.

2 If a heat index between 95 and 105 degrees is stated, plans should be implemented to alter game
conditions that day (both schools).

3.If a heat index over 105 degrees is stated, plans to postpone or reschedule athletic contest should be
implemented (both schools).

C.The following procedures should be considered for practice sessions when a dangerous heat index level is indicated:

1.Possible cancellation of all practice.

2.Shorter practice time.

3.Early morning or late evening practice.

4.Move outside practice sessions indoors.

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II. A combination thermometer may be obtained at most hardware stores. These can be used and kept on the fields to indicate wet bulb globe readings. A radio weather cube is obtainable at most radio shops. This can be kept in the Athletic Office and as mentioned, hourly heat index readings are available. Also, weather alerts are given when indicated.

III. It is recommended that a weight chart be kept for each individual athlete and posted in the locker room or available area. Each athlete should weigh in at the beginning of each practice session and weigh out at the end of each practice session. The percentage of weight loss should be calculated. A weight loss greater than three (3) percent should indicate potential danger of excessive loss of body fluids during the practice sessions and
accordingly, adequate fluid replacement should be maintained throughout the remainder of that day. Greater than five (5) percent weight loss indicates the possibility and significant danger of developing a heat-related illness.

IV. It must be instilled in the athletes by the coaches that water and salt replenishment is a continual process and not a “stop-gap maneuver.” Athletes should be encouraged during hot weather to drink adequate quantities of fluid throughout the day at home, as well as at practice sessions. During practice sessions, water should be available to them at all times. Obviously, the hotter, more humid weather indicates more frequent water breaks. This can be scheduled either up to every ten (10) to fifteen (15) minutes during extremes or if applicable, free water intake should be allowed during the entire practice session. Salt replacement is also a daily process and the athletes should be encouraged to adequately salt their foods during all meals. It is not advised to use salt tablets at any time. These can actually cause more danger, as they cause more concentrations in the stomach and can lead to nausea, vomiting and stomach problems. Salted solutions may be given during practice sessions but certainly water is adequate.

V. It is recommended that practice sessions during middle and late August be scheduled as much as possible during the early morning hours and late evening hours. For example, 8 o’clock practice in the morning and 6:00 p.m. practices seem to be advisable.
When more than one practice session per day is encountered, sufficient recovery time should be observed between sessions.

VI. It is recommended that during hot weather in game situations several heat breaks be called in addition to any other time-outs. It is recommended that at least three (3) breaks per quarter be done by the officiating crew. (For Football).

VII. Heat disorders may be classified as heat cramps, heat syncope, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. **These Guidelines were adopted by the St. Louis Suburban Athletic Conference for their member schools effective 1985-86 school year with the cooperation of Dr. Charles Mannis and Dr. Benji Boonshaft. The guidelines have been edited by the MSHSAA.

National Weather Advisory