With the heat index expected to again top 100 degrees this week, Wake County is opening temporary cooling stations for those who need a place to cool down amid the soaring temperatures. The cooling stations will open tomorrow, July 20, and offer residents a safe reprieve through Sunday evening.
“We continue to monitor the dangers that the summer heat can bring to those in our community,” said Wake County Fire Services and Emergency Management Deputy Director Josh Creighton. “Heat-related illness can be serious and even life-threatening, so we encourage anyone who doesn’t have a safe, cool place to seek relief to take advantage of these offerings.”
Starting at noon tomorrow, residents can cool off at the following Wake County locations through Friday:
- Wake County Health & Human Services, 220 Swinburne St., Raleigh
- Wake County Health & Human Services Center at Departure, 5809 Departure Drive, Raleigh
- Eastern Regional Center, 1002 Dogwood Drive, Zebulon
- Northern Regional Center, 350 E. Holding Ave., Wake Forest
- Southern Regional Center, 130 N Judd Parkway NE, Fuquay-Varina
Cooling stations will be open from noon to closing at each facility.
Residents may also stop by one of our Wake County Public Libraries locations for relief from high temperatures. Closing times for libraries vary, so visitors should check online or call their local library for site-specific information.
Library locations will be the only cooling station locations open over the weekend. Other county facilities will remain closed on Saturday and Sunday.
Sites that are not normally open to the public, such as EMS stations, fire stations and county fleet maintenance buildings, will not be available as cooling stations.
Staying Safe in Extreme Heat
Adults older than 65, children younger than four, people with existing medical conditions and those without access to air conditioning are at the greatest risk on days with high temperatures. Drinking plenty of water and staying out of the sun are critical precautions. People should also check on their neighbors who may be at high risk and ensure they have access to heat relief and hydration.
To stay safe and cool during extreme heat, residents are encouraged to:
- Stay indoors in air-conditioned spaces as much as possible and limit exposure to the sun;
- Avoid alcohol use;
- Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothes that cover as much skin as possible;
- Wear sunscreen;
- Familiarize themselves with the medical conditions that can result from over-exposure to heat, including heat exhaustion and heat stroke;
- Avoid strenuous work during the warmest part of the day. Use a buddy system when working in extreme heat and take frequent breaks; and
- Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles.