County & City Issue Warnings, Open Cooling Centers

| July 6, 2010 | 0 Comments

From the City of Annapolis:

The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory from noon today until 11 p.m. Wednesday, July 7. Temperatures are expected to reach around 100 degrees today and Wednesday. That heat, combined with extremely humid air, will push the heat index, or what the temperature “feels like,” to around 105 degrees.

Mayor Joshua J. Cohen advises residents to check on family members and neighbors who live without air conditioning. According to the Centers for Disease Control, elderly people (65 years and older), infants and children and people with chronic medical conditions are more prone to heat stress.

The City has opened the Roger “Pip” Moyer Community Recreation Center at Truxtun Park (273 Hilltop Lane) as a cooling center today and Wednesday from noon to 7 p.m. Also, the City and Anne Arundel County are opening the Bates Senior Center (119 South Villa Ave.) from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. today and 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday. Water will be  provided at both locations.

Those visiting the cooling center at Truxtun Park will not have access to recreation activities. For more information, call the City’s Office of Emergency Management at 410-216-9167.

Fire Chief David L. Stokes Sr. warns of the problems that come with the extreme heat, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. He said that crews usually experience an increase in medical calls during extended periods of hot weather.

The body normally cools itself by sweating. But under some conditions, sweating just isn’t enough. Very high body temperatures may damage the brain or other vital organs.

Symptoms of heat-related illness:

●       Heat cramps are muscle contractions that are connected to heat and dehydration.
●       Heat exhaustion is also a result of excessive heat and dehydration. The signs of heat exhaustion are paleness, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting, fainting and increased temperature.
●       Heatstroke is the most severe form of heat illness. These people have warm, flushed skin and do not sweat. This is considered a critical medical emergency. These patients must have their temperature reduced quickly and taken directly to the hospital.

The Centers for Disease Control offer guidance on extreme heat:

●       Air-conditioning is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death. During conditions of extreme heat, spend time in locations with air-conditioning such as shopping malls, public libraries, or public health sponsored heat-relief shelters in your area.
●       Get informed. Listen to local news and weather channels or contact your local public health department during extreme heat conditions for health and safety updates
●       Drink cool, nonalcoholic beverages and increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level. During hot weather you will need to increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level.
Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. During heavy exercise in a hot environment, drink two to four glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool fluids each hour.

Please also be advised:

●       If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on water pills, ask how much you should drink while the weather is hot.
●        Don’t drink liquids that contain alcohol, or large amounts of sugar. These actually cause you to lose more body fluid. Also avoid very cold drinks, because they can cause stomach cramps.
●       Replace salt and minerals: Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body.

These are necessary for your body and must be replaced. If you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, non-alcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat. However, if you are on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage or taking salt tablets.

And from Anne Arundel County:

County Executive Leopold today activated cooling centers to offer a respite from temperatures exceeding 100 degrees this week.

“It is very important to monitor your time outdoors in this extreme heat, especially for children and senior citizens,” County Executive Leopold said.  “For those who do not have access to air conditioning, we have made 10 locations available with cooling, public restrooms and water.  Police stations will be open around the clock until further notice as cooling stations.”

The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory effective from noon Tuesday through Wednesday evening. Heat indices will approach or exceed 105 degrees both days.  The centers will be activated through Wednesday pending further review of weather forecasts.  Citizens can call 410-222-0600 with any questions.

The following locations are available as cooling stations:

North County
Pascal Senior Center
125 Dorsey Rd., Glen Burnie
8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri
AACO Police Northern
939 Hammonds Lane, Glen Burnie
0700-till, M-Fri

Brooklyn Park Senior Center

202 Hammonds Lane, Brooklyn Park
8a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri

West County
O’Malley Senior Center

1275 Odenton Rd., Odenton
8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri
AACO Police Western District
8273 Telegraph Road, Odenton
0700-till, M-Su

East County
Pasadena Senior Center

4103 Mountain Rd, Pasadena
8a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri
AACO Police Eastern District
3700 Mountain Road, Pasadena
0700-till, M-Su

South County
Annapolis Senior Center

119 S Villa Ave., Annapolis
8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri
South County Senior Center
27 Stepneys Lane, Edgewater
8a.m.- 4:30 p.m. M-Fri
AACO Police Southern District
35 Stepneys Lane, Edgewater
0700-till, M-Sun

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John is the publisher and editor of Eye On Annapolis. As a resident and business owner in Anne Arundel County for more than 15 years, he realized that there was something missing in terms of community news--and Eye On Annapolis was born in late spring 2009. John's background is in the travel industry as a business owner, industry speaker, and travel writer. In terms of blogging and social media, he cut his teeth with MSNBC.com.