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SA sport and rec clubs to action extreme heat policy says Minister

Minister Leon Bignell, Minister for Tourism and Sport and Recreation issued this warning today, Friday 31st January. ‘South Australian sport and recreation clubs are urged to put their hot weather policies into action over the coming days, with the State Emergency Service issuing an Extreme Heat Warning.

All sport and recreation organisations, associations and clubs have an obligation to implement these policies for the health and safety of their members, participants and officials (referees and umpires).

This warning comes with temperatures expected to top 40 degrees over the weekend, moving into the high 30s for most of next week.

Minister for Recreation and Sport Leon Bignell said prolonged exposure to extreme heat was unsafe for those training or playing sport, as well as those umpiring games.

“We are going to see some very hot days and nights over the coming week so it is very important that sporting and recreation clubs and groups put their hot weather plans into place now and make sure these plans are well-known to everyone involved,” Mr Bignell said.

“Prolonged exposure to extreme heat conditions can cause significant health impacts to those playing sport or training, particularly outdoors or in buildings with no air conditioning.

“Each sport is different and there is no one size fits all policy for extreme heat.

“Depending on the activity being undertaken, available options include cancelling training or matches, moving the times of training or matches and modifying training or matches.”

Mr Bignell said it was important for clubs and associations to plan ahead based on weather predictions and be ready to make early decisions.

He said factors to consider when making decisions about hot weather policies include, the type of playing surface, types of uniforms and protective gear required, game structure and opportunity for breaks and the condition of the athletes and whether they have acclimatised to the local temperature.

“The situation for juniors may be different than for adults, just as the circumstances regarding amateur sport may differ from those of professional sport,” Mr Bignell said.

“Also, people living in different parts of the State may be acclimatised to different weather conditions. For example, a person who lives in the cooler Adelaide Hills and travels to play sport on the Adelaide plains might react differently to someone who lives and trains in Adelaide.”

Parents are also encouraged to make decisions about whether their children participate in a sport or activity during extreme heat.

If you are not sure about exercising in the heat, visit the Sports Medicine Australia – SA Branch website http://www.smasa.asn.au for more information.

To view the weather forecast for South Australia over the next week, visit http://www.bom.gov.au/sa/forecasts/adelaide.shtml’

S Lowe 5 THE FM newsonline wattlerangenow

Source: Minister for Sport and Recreation

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