Heat advisory issued for Shoals counties

The heat advisory isn't slowing down anglers at the High School World Fishing Finals.

Posted: Jun 29, 2018 6:20 PM
Updated: Jun 29, 2018 7:15 PM

Extreme heat in the Shoals has a large fishing tournament taking extra precautions to keep teams hydrated.

The High School World Fishing Finals started Wednesday at McFarland Park in Florence. Close to 400 teams are competing in the tournament to gain prizes and thousands of dollars in scholarship money. The tournament also brings in thousands of people to the Shoals and has a huge economic impact on the area, according to Florence-Lauderdale Tourism.

Most days it's felt like over 100 degrees, which is why Colbert, Franklin, and Lauderdale Counties are under a heat advisory until 7 p.m. Saturday night.

"Every two hours I try to make sure he's got a bottle of water or a Gatorade to keep him refreshed," said David Long, whose son is competing in the tournament.

Long is also on the boat with his son and another high school angler to serve as boat captain during the tournament. Long said they stay on the water all day and with the heat index reaching at about 105 on Friday, he said it's key to keep the team hydrated in heat conditions.

"As long as they keep one line in and one takes a drink, we rotate it out to make sure they are drinking," said Long.

According to the Centers for Disease Control drinking water even when you aren't thirsty, wearing light colored clothing, and trying to stay in the shade can stop you from having any health problems associated with heat.

"Right now we're at about a 105 index," said tournament director, Randy Sullivan. "It's been in the mid 90's everyday this week, but that doesn't seem to stop the kids they are catching fish every single day."

Sullivan told WAAY 31 each boat captain knows to look for signs of heat exhaustion like; dizziness, nausea, clammy hands, and heavy sweating.

"Most of the boaters have been boat captains for quite some time and we encourage them to talk to their student anglers and tell the boat captains if they start to feel dizzy, nauseous, or starting to feel weak," said Sullivan.

The CDC also says, in heat conditions like this, it's a wise choice to plan outdoor activities in the morning or afternoon so temperatures are not as intense.

If you have to be outside drink tons of water.

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