Three student athletes have collapsed from heat-related stress over the past week. Two football players practicing at Pleasure Ridge Park high school collapsed on August 20th. One later died. Then a sixth grade track student from Newburg Middle School collapsed on August 28th after completing a mile run. She was treated and released from the hospital. Kentucky High School Athletics Association assistant commissioner Julian Tackett says that people should not leap to any conclusions about whether these incidents are connected. He says member schools are required to take heat index readings and follow a set of guidelines.
“We annually get reports from the schools indicating the readings that they take, and that just started a year or so ago, as well as the fact that the member schools through the principal certify each year when they join the association that they’re going by the program,” says Tackett.
The program provides schools with guidelines on when to alter or cancel practice because of the heat index. An investigation is underway into the death of 15-year-old PRP football player Max Gilpin.