It's Missouri Summer Weather Safety Week and area residents are feeling the effects of a triple-digit heat wave, but there are several ways for people to combat the excessive heat.
The Monett Branch Library is an ideal place to escape the heat and into the adventures of a summertime good classic, such as "Tom Sawyer" or "Huckleberry Finn." Reading about these rapscallions and their many escapades is an ideal way to beat the heat during a sultry summer afternoon.
"Computer usage is always high in the summertime," said Joyce Frazier, library employee. "In years past, we have had several people come in, sit down and read the newspaper or start a book. Area residents are welcome to come into the library any time."
Library hours are 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
The municipal pool offers a cool and refreshing way to escape the heat.
With activities such as water aerobics, swimming lessons and lap swimming, area residents are sure to find a way to avoid heat-related issues.
Open swim hours at the Monett and Pierce City municipal pools are 1 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 1 to 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Regular pool fees apply. Information on pool rentals and exercise schedules are available at orymca.org/pdf/monett.
Shopping can sometimes get expensive, but most retailers have air conditioning set to a comfortable level in their shops and businesses. It's not too early to pick up a few basic back-to-school supplies or late summer back-to-school clothing. Detailed school supply lists will be distributed to local retailers closer to the start of the 2012-13 school year.
According to Bonnie Witt-Schulte, director of emergency management for the city of Monett, there are established cooling centers in the city where area residents can escape the rising mercury. The locations and hours of operation are listed below:
The YMCA at 205 Euclid will serve as a heat-relief center during regular business hours of 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
The First United Methodist Church at 1600 North Central Ave. will be available from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. It is suggested that persons utilizing the center bring items such as books, games, or other activities to keep busy.
The Senior Citizen Center, located at 405 Dairy Street, will serve as a heat-relief center for seniors during regular business hours of 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
"Drink plenty of fluids and natural fruit juices," said David Compton, director of the Barry County Office of Emergency Management. "Avoid alcoholic beverages and drinks with caffeine, including coffee, tea and sodas. Wear loose-fitting, light-weight clothing and avoid going out in the hottest part of the day."
Other hints include:
* Take cool, not cold, baths or showers.
* Pull window shades during the day to keep excessive heat from building up inside the home.
|*||Stay indoors as much as possible and limit exposure to the sun.|
|*||Stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine if air conditioning is not available.|
|*||Consider spending the warmest part of the day in public buildings such as libraries, schools, movie theaters, shopping malls, and other community facilities. Circulating air can cool the body by increasing the evaporation rate of perspiration. Call 211 for the nearest location of a cooling center.|
|*||Use exhaust fans and dehumidifiers when needed.|
|*||Eat light, well-balanced meals at regular intervals. Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a physician.|
|*||Drink plenty of water. Individuals who have epilepsy or heart, kidney, or liver disease, are on fluid-restricted diets, or who have problems with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing liquid intake.|
|*||Limit intake of alcoholic beverages.|
|*||Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight, and light-colored clothes that cover as much skin as possible.|
|*||Protect your face and head by wearing a wide-brimmed hat. Wear sunscreen.|
|*||Check on family, friends, and neighbors who do not have air conditioning and who spend much of their time alone.|
|*||Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles.|
|*||Avoid strenuous work during the warmest part of the day; use the buddy system when working in extreme heat; and take frequent breaks.|
The extreme heat has also affected livestock and land. A burn ban has been issued jointly by fire chiefs for the City of Monett, the Monett Rural Fire Association, Pierce City, the Pierce City Rural Fire Association and Freistatt. Burn bands were also issued by Mike Redshaw, chief for the Purdy Fire District, and Tony Hinkle, Verona fire chief.