With triple-digit temperatures and dry conditions forecast in Southern California this weekend into early next week, a number of cooling centers have opened to help people beat the heat.
A heat alert has been issued by L.A. County officials, as high temperatures were expected to hit the Los Angeles Basin, East San Gabriel, and the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys, according to a county news release.
Health officials have warned that high temperatures coupled with a few hours of physical activity could lead to illnesses, including severe hydration, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and heat cramps.
Anyone who planned to be outdoors during the heat wave was advised to: reduce physical activity; avoid the sun from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; wear a wide-brimmed hat and lightweight, light-colored clothing outside; wear sun screen with an SPF of at least 15; and drink plenty of water.
Additionally, people were also warned not to leave children, the elderly and pets alone inside non-air conditioned homes and in vehicles.
"Even if the windows are ‘cracked’ or open... temperatures inside can quickly rise to life-threatening levels," Dr. Jeffery Gunzenhauser, the Interim Health Officer for L.A. County, stated in the release.
L.A. County officials have urged anyone planning to visit one of its cooling centers to call in advance. If the cooling center is not operational, check the list for another one or call the county at 211.
In addition to the cooling centers, residents without access to air conditioning in their residence were also encouraged to visit public facilities that have it, such as libraries and shopping malls, the release stated.