District officials closed city-run coronavirus testing sites on Monday, July 20, citing dangerously hot temperatures, while cooling centers are opened for the public’s use.
DC Homeland Security & Emergency Management announced that Mayor Muriel Bowser has activated the District’s Heat Emergency Plan for Saturday, July 18 through Wednesday, July 22.
The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a hazardous weather for high heat and humidity for Sunday, July 19 through Wednesday, July 22.
“When the forecast of the temperature or heat index in the District is 92 degrees or higher, the District Government, through the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA), activates a heat emergency and activates cooling centers for residents to seek relief from the heat,” the city’s statement said.
Recreation centers, public schools, and homeless shelters will be used as cooling centers during this period between 11 am and 7 pm every day.
Residents are encouraged to contact the hyperthermia hotline at (202) 399-7093 in case they or someone they know need to be transported to a cooling center. The city provides an interactive map to find their closest cooling center.
As part of coronavirus measures, it is required to wear a mask or face covering while inside cooling centers. People without masks will be provided one. Upon entrance, visitors will be directed to an open seat that provides social distancing.
Authorities urge people to stay indoors when possible, drinking liquids often and avoiding drinks that contain caffeine and alcohol in order to limit heat exposure. Other recommendations are limiting sun exposure, especially from 10 am – 3 pm, applying sunscreen 20 minutes ahead of going outdoors, and wearing light-colored, lightweight clothing.
Low barrier shelters (where individuals are not obligated to pass drug tests) will be open, as well. The locations of shelters for men and women are as follows:
• New York Avenue Shelter at 1355-57 New York Avenue, NE
• 801 East Shelter at 801 Making Life Better Lane, SE
• Adams Place Shelter at 2210 Adams Place, NE
• Nativity Shelter at 6010 Georgia Avenue, NW
• Harriet Tubman, DC General Building #27 at 1900 Massachusetts Avenue, SE
• Patricia Handy Place for Women at 810 5th Street, NW
• Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) at 425 2nd Street, NW
For all animal emergencies stemming from extreme heat, you can call the Humane Rescue Alliance at 202-576-6664.