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By Joe Thomas
Ledger Editor 

Heat alert is on

Jay backs up Friday's football kickoff until 7:30 p.m due to heat; Canes kick at 7 p.m.


August 24, 2023

Joe Thomas

Flomaton puts final pre-season plans together

Due to extreme heat Jay High School's home football game Friday is scheduled to kick off at 7:30 p.m. instead of 7 p.m. but may start later depending on the 'wet bulb globe temperature."

Other games across the area, including Northview at Flomaton, Hillcrest at T.R. Miller and Georgiana at W.S. Neal are still scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m. Friday.

Jay High School Principal Benji West said the 7:30 p.m. kickoff is tentative, noting if the wet bulb temperature is still too high the kickoff will be delayed.

West said the expected temperature at 7 p.m. Friday in Jay was too high to kick the game off and the kick will happen after the wet bulb temperature gets to a certain range.

The wet bulb temperature used by the Florida High School Athletic Association combines the actual temperature, humidity, wind speed, sun angle and cloud cover.

Named the Zachary Martin Act, the FHSAA and the Florida Legislature passed the act in 2020 following the death of Zachary Martin who died of a heat stroke after practicing in July, 2017 at Riverdale High School.

The FHSSA approved the heat safety measures for outdoor activities that states if the temperature is more than 92.1 degrees, no outdoor activities are allowed.

If the temperature is below 82 degrees, normal activities are allowed but 82 degrees to 92.1 degrees there are safety steps that must be followed. Those steps include:

82.1 to 87 degrees, three separate four-minute breaks per hour of activity; 87.1 degrees to 90 degrees, the maximum time for outdoor activities is two hours and there must be four separate four-minute breaks per hour and for football, players are limited to wearing a helmet, shoulder pads and shorts; from 90.1 degrees to 92 degrees, the maximum outside activity time is one hour with five separate four-minute rest breaks and no protective equipment is permitted for football players and no conditioning activities are allowed.

Jay head football coach Brian Watson said the heat rules have limited the Royals on practicing outside heading into the season.

Flomaton head football coach Doug Vickery said there are no plans to move Friday's kickoff away from a 7 p.m. start.

The Alabama High School Athletic Association has not announced changes to kickoff times or heat breaks during a game.

Under current regulations in Alabama, heat breaks will be called on the first dead ball after the six-minute mark of each quarter.

According to the AHSAA website, several games across the state will kick off later than 7 p.m. due to the heat. The FHSAA website said several games have been cancelled or postponed due to the extreme heat.


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