Eight high school students at a band camp were treated for heat exhaustion as a sweltering heat wave continues across Georgia.
Authorities say the students were at Reinhardt College's campus in Waleska when they became ill Thursday morning. They were taken to a hospital.
The camp halted practices in the morning because the heat index reached 105 degrees.
Forecasters at the National Weather Service were expecting temperatures to remain in the 90s in most of the state Thursday. Similar highs are forecast for Friday.
Atlanta is continuing a 14-day stretch of above-90 highs, while Columbus and Macon are both continuing a 30-day stretch.
The National Weather Serivce has an excessive heat warning in-place for parts of middle Georgia Thursday. Other areas of the state have heat advisories.
For students in metro Atlanta's Cobb County, Thursday marked back to school. The county district is relaxing its ban on drinks on non air-conditioned school buses. Students will be allowed to take containers of water onboard until further notice.
In northeast Georgia, Hall County opens school to students on Monday. The district’s Gordon Higgins says their elementary schools already have sent guidelines outlining when kids can go outside.
“That’s what we really look at, is watching that heat index. When it gets to a certain level, we just basically recommend you don’t take the kids outside.”
That level is a heat index of 105.
Higgins says precautions are in place for high school football practices at the county's schools. He says it’s up to each team’s athletic trainers to closely watch temperature gauges and follow heat guidelines during workouts.
Contributors: Edgar Treiguts