Health Department Establishes Cooling Centers in Columbia
COLUMBIA - The Columbia-Boone County Department of Public Heath and Human Services established nine cooling centers Wednesday after the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory for Boone and surrounding counties. The advisory will start Thursday at noon and goes until Saturday at 7 p.m.
"All of the cooling centers are public places located near bus stops," Public Information Specialist Genalee Alexander said. "It doesn't matter how hot it is--80, 90 or 110 degrees--people can go inside and cool off in the air conditioning for as long as they need to."
The nine locations listed below are not shelters. They are open to the public during their regular business hours and provide air-conditioning, access to restrooms and, sometimes, drinking water. The cooling centers are not equipped to handle people needing medical treatment.
The nine cooling centers located in Columbia are:
- ARC: 1707 West Ash Street
- Armory Sports and Community Center: 701 East Ash Street
- Boone County Government Center: 801 East Walnut
- Columbia Public Library: 100 West Broadway
- Missouri United Methodist Church: 204 South 9th Street
- Oakland Senior Center: 805 Old Hwy 63 North
- Public Heath and Human Services Department: 1005 West Worley
- Salvation Army: 1108 West Ash Street
- Salvation Army Harbor House: 602 North Ann
The Public Heath Department is advising residents to dress for the heat to prevent any heat related illnesses.
"Wear light-colored clothes that are lightweight," Alexander said, "and make sure to bring some sort of hat to wear out in the sun."
The department is also telling residents to drink lots of water at regular intervals during the day and to avoid alcohol and caffeine.