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COVID-19 Safety Plan

2021 RENSSELAER LITTLE LEAGUE COVID-19 SAFETY PLAN

CURRENT AS OF 2/21/21

Safety is our number one goal and anyone who fails to comply will be subject to removal from our facilities.

NOTE – Rensselaer Little League (RLL) will fully comply with all NYS regulations and guidance documents on reopening of youth baseball.  This plan is preliminary in nature, and will likely change when new guidance is released, and will be reviewed continuously for improvements.

Contacts:

Rensselaer LL President Jennifer Haggerty: [email protected]  

All players and families should wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or the time it takes to recite Happy Birthday twice, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.  Players and families should avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Players are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer for personal use.

RLL will have both hand soap and hand sanitizer available at both baseball complexes.

Face Coverings

RLL players in play on the field do NOT have to wear a cloth face mask, but are allowed to if desired.

RLL expects adults and children who are NOT on the field to either wear a mask in public areas of RLL complexes, or socially distance from other families by spacing at least 6 feet away at all times.  If one cannot social distance in a public area, a cloth mask must be worn per NYS regulations.

Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. A cloth face covering is not a substitute for social distancing. At all times, please try to keep six feet between your family and others.

Social Distancing

All players, coaches, volunteers, umpires, and spectators should practice social distancing of six feet wherever possible from individuals not residing within their household. RLL will post signage and guidance for spectators for safe social distancing at fields.

RLL expects all families to socially distance from other families at all times at the fields. If you cannot socially distance, and cloth mask must be worn if you are NOT on the field.

Players will socially distance when not in the field in marked areas between the dugout and the backstop towers.  Players should bring bag chairs to sit in and markings will be provided for players to indicate 6 feet spacing.  Only players and coaches will be allowed in this area.  Coaches should facilitate players not grouping up at the gate to leave the field to get to their chairs. 

Families watching games should be grouped together by immediate family groupings only. Families should limit their attendance at games to NO MORE THAN two spectators per player, per NYS regulation.

At RLL games and at the field, each family group should be at least 6 feet apart from other families.

Player Self-Monitoring and Quarantine

All individuals should measure their body temperature to ensure that no fever is present prior to participating or attending RLL activity. Anyone with symptoms of fever, cough, or worsening respiratory symptoms, or any known exposure to a person with COVID-19 should not attend any RLL activity until cleared by a medical professional.

Any individual, including players, at risk for severe illness or with serious underlying medical or respiratory condition should only attend RLL activities with permission from a medical professional.

If you believe your player (or family member) has been at the fields and is exhibiting symptoms, please immediately call or email RLL President for notification. RLL President will then contact the County Health Department for guidance.

On-Field Guidance

Arrival and Departure to field before and after games

Players should arrive to the fields no earlier than 30 minutes before their scheduled game time starts. Families and spectators should wait in vehicles, if possible, until immediately before the scheduled game time.  

On-field warm-up should be limited to no more than 30 minutes.

 

Players and families should vacate the field as soon as is reasonably possible after the conclusion of their game to minimize unnecessary contact with players, coaches, and spectators from the next game, but no more than 15 minutes after a game ends.

 

No Handshakes or Personal Contact Celebrations

Players and coaches should take measures to prevent all but the essential contact necessary to play the game. This should include refraining from handshakes, high fives, fist/elbow bumps, chest bumps, and group celebrations.

Please line up outside the dugout and tip caps to the opposing team as a sign of good sportsmanship after a game.

Drinks and Snacks

Athletes, managers/coaches, and umpires must bring their own personal drinks to all team activities. Drinks should be labeled with the person’s name.

Individuals must take their own drink containers home each night for cleaning and sanitation or use single-use bottles or they will be thrown out daily.

There is no use of shared or team beverages.  Teams must not share any snacks or food.

Personal Protective Equipment

All managers/coaches, volunteers, umpires, and other adults on the field should wear cloth masks if they cannot socially distance from other adults and players.

Players should wear cloth face coverings when in close contact areas and in places where recommended social distancing is challenging or not feasible, such as in dugouts.

Players should NOT wear protective medical gloves on the field during game play.

Players are NOT required to wear a cloth face covering while on the field during game play.

Players will be permitted to wear a cloth face covering on the field during game play, if physically able to do so, based on a directive of a medical provider or individual determination of the player/ parent/guardian/caretaker.

Dugouts

Players will socially distance when not in the field in marked areas.  Markings will be provided for players to indicate 6 feet spacing.  Only players and coaches will be allowed in this area.  Coaches should facilitate players not grouping up at the gate to leave the field to get to their chairs. 

Only the on deck and in the hole batters are allowed in the dugout.

Players and managers/coaches should wear a cloth face covering while in the dugout.

Player Equipment

No personal player bat bags/equipment bags should be allowed in the dugout.

Player equipment should be spaced accordingly outside the dugout to prevent direct contact.

Players should have their own individual batter’s helmet, glove, bat, and catcher’s equipment.

Player’s equipment (e.g. bags, helmets, bats, gloves, etc.) should be cleaned and disinfected after each use by a parent/ guardian/caretaker.

Individuals disinfecting equipment are encouraged to use gloves while using disinfectants and follow the manufacturer’s directions for use. All disinfectants should be stored properly, in a safe area, out of the reach of children.

Players must not share towels, clothing, or other items that they may use to wipe their face or hands

Baseballs

Baseballs should be rotated through on a regular basis, at least every two innings, to limit individual contact.

Umpires should limit their contact with the ball, and catchers should retrieve foul balls and passed balls where possible.

Balls used in infield/outfield warm-up should be isolated from a shared ball container.

Foul balls landing outside the field of play should be retrieved by participating players, coaches, and umpires. No spectators should retrieve the ball.

Spitting, Sunflower Seeds, Gum

Sunflower seeds, gum, etc., are NOT allowed in dugouts or on the playing field or at RLL complex.

All players and coaches are to refrain from spitting at all times, including in dugout areas and on the playing field.

Game operations

Pre-Game Plate Meetings

Plate meetings will be conducted 6 feet apart.

Social distancing of six feet between individuals should be implemented between teams and umpires.

Limit League/Game Volunteers

For each game, there should only be the minimum required team manager (1), coach (1), umpires, and one (1) league administrator (i.e. Safety Officer, player agent, etc.) in attendance on the field or in dugouts.  Farm will have an exception:  Coaches will be allowed on the field while their team bats to coach 1st, 3rd, and pitch.

Practices should be limited to the managers/coaches and players.

Families should either deliver and pick up their player to their coach, leaving in between, or stay in their vehicle.

Scorekeeping should be done by team coaches or team parent/guardian.

Field Preparation and Maintenance

Fields should be mowed, raked, and lined prior to teams and spectators arriving at the complex and after they depart. It is encouraged that volunteers already participating in the game (managers/coaches, umpires, and league administrator) perform these tasks to limit individuals at the site.

Any shared field preparation equipment be sprayed or wiped with cleaner and disinfectant before and after each use.

 

Umpires

Umpires are permitted to be placed behind the pitcher’s mound/circle or 6 feet behind the catcher to call balls and strikes. Umpires are encouraged to keep a safe distance from players as much as possible. If physically able, umpires are encouraged to wear cloth face coverings while umpiring.

Clean and Disinfect Shared Equipment and Surfaces

RLL will clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily and in between all facility uses, including practices and games. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, facility equipment, dugouts, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

If surfaces are visibly soiled or dirty, they should be cleaned with a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

Scheduling of Practices and Games

RLL will schedule sufficient time between practices and games to facilitate the complete evacuation of individuals from a previous practice or game from the premises before the next group enters.

Players/families/spectators are instructed not to show up to fields more than 30 minutes before game time.

Players should proceed to their assigned field and check in with their coach for instruction.

If there is a game or practice prior to your event, families and spectators are expected to stay in their vehicles or at recommended social distances until the start of their game play to prevent overcrowding of spectator spaces and walkways.

Limiting Spectator Attendance

All spectators should follow best social distancing practices — stay six feet away from individuals outside their household; wear a cloth face covering when not able to socially distance; avoid direct hand or other contact with players/managers/coaches during play.

RLL advises all families to limit their attendance to only limited family members. NYS Regulations limit spectators to NO MORE THAN two per player.

 Spectators should bring their own seating or portable chairs.

A spectator with any of the following conditions should not attend a practice or game until evaluated by a medical provider and given clearance to do so:

-          Active COVID-19 infection

-          Known direct contact with an individual testing positive for COVID-19

-          Fever

-          Cough

Those at higher risk for severe disease should consider consultation with their medical provider before attending a game and should ensure the strictest adherence to guidelines regarding face coverings, distancing, and handwashing.

Such groups include:

-          Those with a serious underlying medical condition, including heart disease, morbid obesity, diabetes, lung disease, immunocompromise, chronic kidney disease, and chronic lung disease.

-          Those currently residing in a nursing home or long-term care facility

-          Those over 65

Public Restrooms

Prior to and after any RLL activity, restrooms will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Restrooms should be disinfected on a regular basis.

Concession Stand

The concession rules to follow in accordance with the state guidelines.

Families are encouraged to bring their own beverages.

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