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Cooling centers open in Little Rock after dangerous temperatures raise concerns

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Cooling centers open in Little Rock after dangerous temperatures raise concerns

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — With a heat advisory expected this week, the City of Little Rock will open four of its community centers for those who need to escape the heat.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Little Rock said it’s very important to stay cool because anyone could be at risk.

The heat index could reach 115 degrees.

“Makes for conditions that are quite dangerous if you’re outside working,” NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist Dennis Cavanaugh said.

People need to be extra careful when it comes to heat-related illnesses.

RELATED: Experts warn of dangerous heat expected across Arkansas Monday

“We don’t often see heat index values over 110, that can put a lot of stress on your body even for very healthy in shape people. You can get overheated very quickly so, it’s all about rest and finding some relief from the heat,” Cavanaugh said.

Although the temperature may not look very high, it will feel much hotter.

“Monday and Tuesday we’re looking at highs in the upper nineties, and that’s pretty normal here for Arkansas. What’s not quite normal is maintaining that high humidity when we’re that hot,” Cavanaugh said.

It’s important to know the symptoms of a heat stroke.
If someone is experiencing a headache, no sweating, and a body temperature of over 103 degrees call 911 and get them to a cool place until help arrives.

If you want to enjoy the outdoors, do it early in the day.

“It’ll still be super humid, but the temperatures will be around 80 degrees, so it won’t quite as much stress on your body although it will still feel pretty nasty out there,” Cavanaugh said.

“We’re going to plan on going to Pinnacle in the morning,” park visitor Mikey Clough said.

Also, make sure you’re hydrated.

“We’re going to bring lots of water and an umbrella for shade,” Clough said.

If possible, take breaks in the A.C. often.

RELATED: Paramedics see major increase in heat exhaustion during the heat wave

“Plan, make sure you hydrate the day before not the day of. And then just know yourself. If you feel hot or sweaty take a break, sit down and just relax. Don’t push yourself,” Clough said.

The high temperatures are especially dangerous for the young and the elderly who don’t get cooled off as quickly.

The City of Little Rock said its community centers available from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Parks and Recreation staff will be there to help citizens and provide them with water to drink and restroom accommodations.

Cooling Center Locations:

  • Dunbar Community Center – 1001 W. 16th 
  • East Little Rock Community Center – 2500 East 6th Street 
  • Southwest Community Center – 6401 Baseline Road 
  • West Central Community Center – 4521 John Barrow Road
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