Cooling Centers Open In Iowa - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Cooling Centers Open In Iowa

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Claire Powell

With extremely high temperatures, cooling centers across Iowa are opening their doors and welcoming in community members.

There weren't many people taking advantage of the centers as of Tuesday afternoon, but that could change after a few days of 100 degree temperatures.

"You know the cooling center is really there to provide some relief for people since we do know that as little as two hours in air conditioning can reduce your chance of a risk of heat-related illness," said Sarah Boese, Polk County Health Department. 

Most places are open during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, but a few, like Polk County Health Department and Norwoodville Senior Center, are staying open until 9 p.m.

The centers want to be sure if people don't have a place to go, they can come inside, relax and cool off.

"It's the cumulative effect of several days of really hot weather that causes the risk of people to have heat stroke heat exhaustion," said Boese.

"We know the temperatures are really very dangerous and there's a lot of health issues and the elderly and that kind of thing. We just want to provide and let them know, come on in, chill out a little bit, relax, feel at home," said Cynthia Hunafa, with Creative Visions.

If people aren't in the cooling centers, they are finding their own ways of staying cool.

"I have a pool at home, I have the air conditioning going, and it's running the bills up but we got to do what we got to do and try and stay out of the sun as much as possible," said Thomas Frommelt, a Des Moines resident.

"You can also stay safe in your home by taking periodic cold showers and drinking water throughout the day," said Boese.

The Zion Lutheran Church along Beaver Avenue is keeping its' doors open all night long and for a full list of cooling centers visit the Polk County Health Departments website, 


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