17 December 2015
With the Hot Weather upon us the Office for Recreation and Sport reminds all sporting organisations to implement a Hot Weather Policy to prevent heat illness and related injuries. An effective Hot Weather/Extreme Weather policy should:
* Reflect the information advice provided by South Australian Sports Medicine Association
* Is applied at all levels of the activity, including at club level
* Applies to all events, matches and to training
* Is known and that all persons responsible to make decisions under the policy know how and when it should be applied.
In considering the application of Hot Weather Policies organisations should also consider their decisions in the light of:
* Their obligations under the Work Health and Safety Act 2012
* Their obligations under the Children’s Protection Act 1993 where any participant, volunteer or official may be aged U18 years
Hot Weather/Extreme Weather policies should also cover activities that take place in venues which are non-air-conditioned. Most of the guidelines in a Hot Weather/Extreme Weather policy are common sense procedures and following these steps should result in more enjoyable, pain free and sustained exercise activity for everyone.
With a warm summer expected it is vital that the effects that heat can have on participants in sport, recreation are kept in mind. It is not just the competitor’s health that needs to be considered when participating in hot weather conditions. Umpires, coaches, officials, spectators and volunteers are also susceptible to dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
If organisations and individuals are unsure about guidelines relating to participation in sport and recreation in Hot/Extreme Weather conditions please visit South Australian Sports Medicine Association website www.sasma.com.au for more advice and information.
The Bureau of Meteorology also provide a webpage, Thermal Comfort Observations, which provides hourly updated temperatures for different regions of the state. The community should take advantage of this and use it to guide their decision making.