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Salt Lake County Cooling Centers reopen amid expected heat wave

Posted at 9:27 PM, Aug 16, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY — With high temperatures expected in the valley throughout the week, Salt Lake County is offering two public cooling centers to residents and visitors.

Cooling centers are air-conditioned, indoor spaces available to anyone seeking a break from the heat, allowing people to cool off, hydrate, and stay safe from heat-related illnesses.

With triple-digit temperatures in the forecast, the county is offering up two spaces: One at the Mountain America Expo Center (MAEC) located at 9575 South State Street in Sandy, and the other at the Salt Palace Convention Center (SPCC) at 100 South West Temple in Salt Lake City.

Inside of the buildings, signs line the walkways, enforcing face masks and standard social distancing protocols.

Visitors are required to check in and fill out a contact tracing form prior to entering the cooling center.

Inside, the rooms are kept around 72 degrees, there is plenty of distanced seating, and water and snacks are provided.

Hand sanitizer stations are also located along the entrance, at check-in and inside the designated ‘cooling center’ room.

The cooling centers at SPCC and MAEC are both open every day from noon to 7 p.m. through Sunday, August 23. Parking is free.

Salt Lake County also encourages residents to “look out for each other and check on neighbors, particularly those who are older or have chronic conditions, during periods of extreme heat.”

Salt Lake County health officials provided the following tips to help residents exercise caution in excessive heat:
• Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and avoiding alcohol and caffeine.
• Wear appropriate clothing; light-colored and lightweight fabrics work best.
• Stay indoors during midday when outside temperatures are hottest, usually between noon and 3:00 p.m.
• Take it easy, avoiding exercise and strenuous activity when it’s hottest outside.
• Know the warning signs of heat-related illness, which include dizziness, nausea, rapid heart rate, chest pain and difficulty breathing.
• Visit a cooling center if necessary.