Oppressive heat led to the cancellation of all high school indoor and outdoor athletic events and practices in Suffolk County on Tuesday.
“We don’t want to see kids getting heat exhaustion or heat stroke,” said Tom Combs, executive director of Section XI, the governing body for Suffolk high school sports. “We just feel that, based on all the research, that this is the right way to do it. We have a safety committee that meets twice a year to update any of our standards. It’s comprised of physicians, athletic trainers, coaches, and athletic directors.”
Combs explained that a cancellation alert is issued when the heat and humidity index surpasses 95 degrees. Suffolk uses the index in Huntington, Smithtown, Miller Place, Bayport, and East Hampton to determine whether or not to issue an alert, Combs said
Temperatures at the Newsday offices in Melville approached 90 degrees with a real-feel temperature of 95 degrees at 1:15pm, according to weather.com. The Suffolk heat delay took effect at noon.
Nassau does not issue county-wide heat alerts, but instead leaves it up to individual schools to make a determination on heat-related cancellations, based on official state guidelines, Section VIII Executive Director Pat Pizzarelli said. The state heat policy requires that no outside activity, practice or contest, can be held when the real-feel temperature is above 96 degrees. Inside activities should only be held if air conditioning is present.