PITTSFIELD, Mass. (NEWS10/WWLP)- Several cooling centers will be open Tuesday, June 29, and Wednesday, June 30 in the City of Pittsfield to help people escape the heatwave.
Pittsfield’s Public Health Director, Gina Armstrong, is reminding residents to be aware of the signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke, especially in young children, the elderly, those who are sick, and anyone more at risk of heat-related illness.
Pittsfield Cooling Centers
- Christian Center, 193 Robbins Avenue, open June 29, until 7 p.m. and June 30, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
- Salvation Army, 298 West Street, open June 29, until 1 p.m. and June 30, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
- Ralph J. Froio Senior Center, 330 North Street, open June 29, 4 p.m. and June 30, 10 a.m. – 4
It’s important to call 911 immediately if someone is suffering from heatstroke. Symptoms of heatstroke include:
- High body temperature (103°F or higher)
- Hot, red, dry, or damp skin
- Fast, strong pulse
- Losing consciousness (passing out)
Pittsfield is reminding residents to slow down and avoid strenuous activity. They are also reminding residents that leaving children or pets in a closed vehicle could result in death.
“Young children, elderly people, and those who are sick or overweight are more at risk of heat-related illness. Individuals with chronic illness should also be particularly cautious to avoid heat stress,” said Public Health Director Gina Armstrong.
Preventative measures should be taken in order to avoid heat stress include:
- Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles.
- Slow down, avoid strenuous activity.
- Drink plenty of water — even if you are not thirsty. Avoid alcoholic beverages and liquids high in sugar or caffeine. If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink, ask how much you should drink during hot weather.
- Drinking sports drinks can replace the salt and potassium that may be lost by sweating. Warning: If you are on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage.
- If you do not have air conditioning, stay on your lowest floor, out of the sun. Use fans to stay cool and avoid using your stove and oven. Consider spending time in air-conditioned public spaces, such as schools, libraries, theaters, and other community facilities.
- Stay indoors as much as possible and limit exposure to the sun.
- Limit outdoor exercise and outdoor work, if possible.
- If you must go outside, try to do so either in the morning or in the evening. While outside, take frequent breaks and find air-conditioned places or shady areas where you can rest. This will give your body a chance to recover.
- Wear light, loose-fitting clothing and a hat with vents such as straw hats.
- Take cool showers or baths to cool off.
At the first signs of heat illness, go to a cooler place and rest. Pets can also suffer from excessive heat. Make sure your pets have adequate drinking water and do not leave pets outside for extended periods of time.
Be a good neighbor. Check on family, friends, and neighbors, especially the elderly, those who live alone, those with medical conditions, those who may need additional assistance, and those who may not have air conditioning.