EL CENTRO, Calif. -
Summer is here and the heat is expected to rise over 120 degrees Fahrenheit in Imperial Valley. Local health department officials warned that people should take appropriate precautions because last year’s summer was deadly.
Dr. Karla Lopez said, “We did have cases related to heat related death.”
People are encouraged to use any of the 30 cool centers throughout the county for protection.
“Somewhere to cool off. That’s the main purpose of the cool centers,” Lopez said.
Mostly they’re for vulnerable people to find a place to rest, drink cool water and have access to restrooms.
“We have children. We have the elderly. We have those who have chronic illnesses, pregnant women and those with disabilities,” Lopez said.
Heat stroke and heat exhaustion can have devastating effects.
“Symptoms for heat stroke are altered mental status, loss of consciousness, dry hot skin. It could take you to death if you do not receive emergency medical attention,” Lopez said.
People should drink plenty of fluids, dress in lightweight clothing, and stay indoors during the day.
“If you’re going to do outdoor activities, either do them early in the morning or late evening,” Lopez said.
People should look out for the safety of others, as well.
“Please do not leave children in cars. Please don’t leave your pets in the cars. If you have neighbors, elderly neighbors, that are alone, if you can offer to check on them,” Lopez advised.
Here's a list of Cool Centers in Imperial County.
Clinicas de Salud del Pueblo in: Blythe, Brawley, Calexico, Coachella, El Centro, Mecca, Niland, West Shores, Winterhaven.
Brawley: Brawley Open Health Center; Brawley Senior Center; Brawley Public Library.
Calexico:Camarena Public Library
Imperial County Free Library: Calipatria, Heber, Holtville, Salton City.
Westmorland: Senior Citizen Building
El Centro: Salvation Army Thrift Store; El Centro Community Center; Adult Center; Imperial Valley Mall Food Court.
Holtville: Civic Center
Imperial: IV EXPO; Chamber of Commerce; Imperial Public Library.
Niland: Chamber of Commerce
Ocotillo: Imperial Valley Desert Museum
Seeley: Seeley Community Church
Winterhaven: San Pasqual Family Resource Center