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Tips for staying cool as temperatures reach into the mid-90s or higher

Stay in air-conditioned buildings

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2016) — With temperatures expected to be in the 90s or higher in much of the state for the next week, Kentuckians are reminded to practice safety when going outside in extreme temperatures.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Dr. Katherine Pohlgeers, a UofL Physicians group doctor who has been serving as interim medical director for the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness, offer tips for staying safe:

Stay cool

  • Stay in air-conditioned buildings.
  • Contact Metro United Way at 2-1-1 or metrounitedway.org to locate a cooling center in your area, including libraries, community centers and government buildings.
  • Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.
  • Limit outdoor activity, especially midday when it is the hottest part of the day, and avoid direct sunlight.
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Take cool showers or baths to lower your body temperature.
  • Check on at-risk friends, family and neighbors at least twice a day.
  • Take special care of your pets in the heat, including ample shade and water and limits on exercise.
  • Stay hydrated
  • Drink from two to four cups of water every hour while working or exercising outside.
  • Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Avoid alcohol or liquids containing high amounts of sugar.
  • Make sure your family, friends and neighbors are drinking enough water.
  • Find a cool public place, such as a library or a community center.

Stay informed

  • Check your local news for extreme heat warnings and safety tips.
  • Visit gov/emergencyservices to find local information and tips for preventing heat sickness.
  • Keep your friends, family and neighbors aware of weather and heat safety information.
  • On Twitter, check the hashtag #cool502 to find more tips.

In Louisville, Metro Community Services’ Office for Aging and Disabled Citizens, in partnership with KIPDA, United Steelworkers Local 1693 and WLKY, collected hundreds of fans for donation to those who need them. Beginning on Friday, fans will be available for seniors 60 and older, as well as to individuals with physical disabilities, on a first-come, first-served basis at various Neighborhood Places and Community Ministries around the community. To locate a facility nearest you, contact 211 or 311.

In addition, the Coalition for the Homeless coordinates Operation White Flag when the temperature or heat index is 95 or higher. Five participating shelters —St. Vincent de Paul (1034 S. Jackson St.), Salvation Army Center of Hope (831 S. Brook St.), Jefferson Street Baptist Center (733 E. Jefferson St.), St. John Center (700 E. Muhammad Ali (Men), and Wayside Christian Mission (432 E. Jefferson St.)—allow homeless people to remain inside during White Flag events.