Cooling Centers in Baltimore County
It's already 102 F in Baltimore County with a heat index of about 120 F according to the weather center. We're expecting more of the same tomorrow, except hotter. If you are looking for access to water and bathrooms in a cool environment, then Baltimore County has several "cooling centers" available where you can get relief from the heat.
During the months of May through September, Baltimore County Senior Centers are open to the general public, regardless of age, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Residents who visit these locations to get relief from the heat can watch TV, read a book or sit and relax. For information on the 19 Senior Centers call the Department of Aging Senior Center Information and Assistance line at 410-887-2594.
Baltimore County Public Library has 17 convenient branches that are also open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and the Rosedale, Towson and Woodlawn locations are open Sundays 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Residents can cool off while reading a book or enjoying scheduled events at a branch in their community. For more information on a library branch nearest you or the locations that are open Friday through Sunday, call 410-887-6100.
Other "Cooling" Places
There are other places you can go to cool off in Baltimore County:
- Community Centers
- Movie Theaters
- Neighbor's home with air conditioning
Hot Weather Reminders
The combination of high temperatures, humidity and poor air quality constitute a threat, especially to certain groups of people: older adults, children, and people with respiratory or other health problems. Below are some tips to help you and your family get relief from the heat and stay safe.
- Never leave a child or pet in an unattended vehicle.
- Check on elderly or chronically ill family members, friends and neighbors to make sure they are okay. If you know an elderly person who lives alone, stop in to see them and be sure they are ok and have everything they need. Maybe bring them a cool drink when you stop by.
- Visit a cooling center in Baltimore County or consider visiting family, friends or an air-conditioned public building.
- Stay hydrated with water or fruit juices.
- Keep your home cool by preparing foods that require minimal cooking. During the summer I use my George Forman grill a lot and I also have a rice steamer that I'll use to steam vegetables at the same time as I make rice or other grains. I made a big bowl of tabbouleh salad yesterday that will last us for a few days.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing, a hat and sunglasses when outdoors.
- Use sunscreen and reapply often when spending time in the pool or sweating excessively. Ladies be sure to use a moisturizer that has sunscreen in it on your face to protect you from the sun.
- Limit outdoor activity when the temperatures and humidity are extremely high. Fill your gas tank in the mornings or later in the evening.
- Make sure you take care of your pets by providing plenty of water and appropriate shelter.
- Take time to prepare or reevaluate your emergency preparedness kit. Make sure you have enough water to last you at least three days, a flashlight with extra batteries, candles and a battery-powered radio.
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