PALMDALE – The Los Angeles County Health Office has issued a Heat Alert through Wednesday, Aug. 30, for the Antelope Valley, downtown Los Angeles, Pomona area, San Gabriel Valley and Santa Clarita Valley.
Due to the extremely high temperatures, Palmdale city officials have announced that the Palmdale City Library, located at 700 E. Palmdale Blvd., is a designated cooling center open to people of all ages.
The Library’s hours are Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The Library’s phone number is 661-267-5600.
Seniors are also welcome to visit Legacy Commons for Active Seniors during the heat wave to cool off and take advantage of the programs and activities. Hours of operation are Monday through Thursday, 8 am to 4:30 pm, ad Friday from 8 am to 12 noon.
For a list of Cooling Centers and information on heat-related illnesses and prevention, visit the Public Health website at www.publichealth.lacounty.gov, or call 2-1-1. To locate the nearest cooling center, go to http://bit.ly/CoolingCtrs7-19.
According to the LA County Health Office, a heat emergency indicates that extreme measures need to be taken to protect the health and safety of those who are most vulnerable, including older adults, infants and children, and others who have medical or other conditions that make them sensitive to the heat.
Exertion and heavy work out-of-doors should be limited or eliminated whenever possible. During the current situation, in which the relative humidity is below 30 percent, key strategies to remain cool include staying in air-conditioned areas and drinking adequate fluids to remain hydrated throughout the day.
“When temperatures are as high as they will be in the next few days, even a few hours of exertion may cause severe dehydration, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Others who are frail or have chronic health conditions may develop serious health problems leading to death if they are exposed to high temperatures over several days,” stated Jeffrey Gunzenhauser, MD, MPH, Interim Health Officer, Los Angeles County. “Thus, it is critically important to never leave children, elderly people, or pets unattended in homes with no air conditioning and particularly in vehicles, even if the windows are ‘cracked’ or open, as temperatures inside can quickly rise to life-threatening levels. If you have an elderly or infirm neighbor without air conditioning, check up on them regularly, and make sure that they get to a cooling center or other air conditioned space between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.”
Additional tips for those who must work or exercise outdoors:
- Ensure that cool drinking water is available.
- Drink water or electrolyte-replacing sports drinks often; do not wait until you are thirsty.
- Avoid drinking sweetened drinks, caffeine, and alcohol.
- Avoid drinking extremely cold water as this is more likely to cause cramps.
- Allow athletes or outdoor workers to take frequent rests.
- Pay attention to signs of dehydration which include dizziness, fatigue, faintness, headaches, muscle cramps, and increased thirst. Individuals with these symptoms should be moved to a cooler, shaded place, and given water or sport drinks. More severe signs of heat- related illness may include diminished judgment, disorientation, pale and clammy skin, a rapid and weak pulse, and/or fast and shallow breathing.
Los Angeles County residents and business owners may call 2-1-1 for emergency preparedness information and other referral services. The toll-free 2-1-1 number is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 211 LA County services can also be accessed by visiting https://www.211la.org/.
[Information via news release from the city of Palmdale.]