Cooling centers provide escape from the heat

Jul 2, 2012

Triple-digit temperatures with heat advisories and excessive heat warnings continue today, throughout much of the state. 

The National Weather Service forecasts dangerous temperatures, between 100 and 105 degrees, this afternoon. The heat advisory says the longevity of this heat wave makes it particularly dangerous, as the effects of excessive heat are cumulative – so Missourians in areas under the advisory are advised to take precautions.

Throughout the area, cooling centers offer shelter from the heat for those who need it. The Columbia-Boone County Department of Health and Human Services has established nine cooling centers across Columbia. Cooling centers serve as a place where people can go to escape the heat. They can be helpful not only for those who don’t have air conditioning but also for people who are just out and about and need to cool down.

One of Columbia’s most popular centers is the Columbia Public Library. Library Public Relations Manager Mitzi St. John says the range of activities offered by the library make it a good place for a cooling center: “They can come and use our Internet enabled computers, there are magazines here to read, newspapers, books. We have programs throughout the day for people of all ages.”

The National Weather Service’s heat advisory for Boone County is in effect through Monday evening. Counties also under this heat advisory include Cole, Audrain, Callaway, and Osage. A list of all nine cooling centers in Columbia can be found on the City of Columbia’s Health and Human Service’s website.