As the Alabama Crimson Tide readies for its latest game at Bryant-Denny Stadium, fans with tickets are facing another afternoon kickoff with hellish temperatures.

Tuscaloosa Fire Chief Randy Smith said Tuscaloosa Fire and Rescue responded to more calls and treated more people than ever for heat-related illnesses at the New Mexico State game at Bryant-Denny last weekend.

But the city and university are taking more precautions for this weekend.

“We saw 107 different calls for heat or any other types of emergencies,” Smith said. “There were a total of 150 patients we talked to and took vitals for or assisted them from a hot environment to a cooler environment.”

The Tide’s game against Ole Miss kicks off at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, and fans inside the stadium will have additional ways to keep cool during the game, Smith said.

“We’re bringing additional water out for our personnel,” he said. “We made a lot of recommendations to the University Of Alabama. They have installed 16 misting fans and additional cooling stations.”

Anyone heading to the game who isn’t used to the heat should make an attempt at acclimating beforehand, Smith said.

“It’s good to spend a couple of hours outside prior to the weekend so you can start building up a tolerance,” Smith said.

In addition, alcohol may be a factor in many heat-related illnesses during and after football games, Smith said.

So how can you keep yourself from getting heat exhaustion or worse? Here’s some tips:

  • Wear light-colored, loose clothing
  • Drink plenty of water — empty water bottles are allowed into the stadium and can be filled at a cooling station
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Stay in the shade as much as possible
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