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Local sporting events canceled due to poor air quality from dust storm

Yesterday’s major dust storm continues to impact the valley. creating poor air quality throughout. It's even affecting some outdoor sporting events tonight.

The YMCA of the Desert has canceled soccer practices scheduled for Saturday.

Football players from Desert Hot Springs High School didn’t get to face off Desert Mirage High in Thermal on Friday night.

“We want to keep kids and family safe. So I mean, I'm okay to air on the side of caution anytime it comes to someone's health,” said Kai Lyles, Athletic Director and Assistant Principal of Desert Hot Springs High School.

Lyles tells us Friday night's game was postponed for the sake of the players' health. “Just want to keep kids safe. Keep, you know, spectators safe with the air quality. There's no sense in risking something for the sake of playing a game when we're talking about people's health.” 

And it's not just for the football players, but for all students and staff. The school canceled all outdoor P.E. classes and sports practices for the day. Other school districts did the same out of caution. The Coachella Valley Unified School District also canceled the West Shores High School football game.

“It's important to to live a long and healthy life. You don't want to have any sort of injuries or health ailments based upon you know, playing a football game in dust," Lyles said.

Lyles says it's not the first time they’ve had to cancel or postpone games and practices due to extreme weather. With the desert known for its hot summer days, he says they are always keeping a close eye on conditions.

“I think we as a school district are being way more vigilant in monitoring that. So there's different equipment that we've been able to purchase for the schools and for the athletic trainers to kind of monitor the heat index, so that we're not putting our kids in harm's way by playing in 110 degree weather heats,” Lyles explained.

It’s a bummer for many people and teams when these games don’t go as scheduled. But at at the end of the day, Lyles says it's the health of the students that goes above all. “When we're talking about our youth and the health of our youth, you know, this isn't the NFL, you know, they're not getting paid millions of dollars to play this game, if we need to reschedule it. It's up to the AD's in schools to make that happen," Lyles added, "Long term if I know my kids are safe and healthy See, that's the most important thing.”

DHS High will now take on Desert Mirage High in Thermal on Monday at 6pm. DHS's game that was scheduled with 29 Palms on Thursday will be moved to Saturday, 10/15. The JV game will be at 9am and the Varsity will be at noon.

All other high school football games continued as scheduled on Friday night.

Be sure to tune into the Best Local Sports Show for all of the highlights! 

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Samantha Lomibao

Samantha joined KESQ News Channel 3 in May 2021. Learn more about Samantha here here.


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