California Heat Wave Forces to Open Cooling Centers for Residents

California
Courtesy of Doug Kerr (CC0)

Due to California’s hot weather, they have provided cooling centers for people who need them. Currently, there are 40 cooling centers, which were set up by the county’s emergency department. Some of the cooling centers have been set up in recreation, park facilities, libraries, and senior living facilities. The shelters are offering shelter in air-conditioned rooms and cold drinks during the heat that persists throughout the day.

Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency on Wednesday to try and increase power production and told residents to reduce electricity usage due to the heat.

California
Courtesy of Nic Redhead (CC0)

Doctors say when temperatures remain high, mainly for long periods, especially overnight, it puts strains on the human body that can cause a plethora of illnesses. sometimes the illnesses can potentially lead to death.

In April, California released an Extreme Heat Action Plan explaining protections for Californians from the dangers of extreme heat. Some of the recommendations included:

  • Better targeting and coordination of public messaging;
  • Especially in the underserved communities;
  • Planting more trees in urban areas that do not have their cooling shade;
  • And greening schoolyards; which increases the number of cooling centers.

That plan was an improved version of a 2013 strategy that included over 40 proposals to prepare for the very intense heat crisis, Most of the proposals were not implemented, one of the problems being because of funding issues, officials told The Times. The updated Extreme Heat Action Plan has $365 million from last year’s budget to help out to carry out its proposals.

Cold water is an essential resource for homeless residents, due to the burning heat levels. Tents line the streets where thousands of homeless people live without access to refrigerators or air conditioning. Weather forecasters have excessive heat warnings for most parts of California, in addition to some parts of Arizona, and Nevada. The harsh heat is expected to last into next week.

Written By Lance Santoyo
Edited by Sheena Robertson

Sources:

Herald Review: LA’s homeless struggle to stay cool in heatwave.

LA Times: California promised to improve response to deadly heat waves. It’s still struggling.

Abs Cbn: California opens cooling centers for heat wave vulnerable.

Featured Image Courtesy of Doug Kerr’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Inset Image Courtesy of Nic Redhead’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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