Wednesday, July 20, 2011

City, police are here to help in heat

As the heat wave continues, I just wanted to let you know that police are here to help in events like this. If you are concerned about a friend, neighbor or relative without access to air conditioning who you have been unable to reach, especially an elderly one, call 911, and we can check on their welfare.

The City also announced today that residents seeking relief from the heat can call the City’s 3-1-1 Action Center to request transportation to one of the City-provided cooling centers. The 3-1-1 Action Center can be reached by dialing 311 or 816-513-1313. This transportation service is provided by Kansas City Fire Department personnel.

Here's a complete list of Kansas City's cooling centers. If you're outside of Kansas City, Mo., call United Way by dialing 211 or 816-474-5112 for a complete list of community centers and hours of operation.

In their wool-blend uniforms and bullet-resistant vests, police are struggling through the heat, as well. KMBZ has an interesting piece on how our helicopter officers are faring. (Our helicopters don't have air conditioning.) We're giving our officers the same advice that everyone should heed in these extreme temperatures: don't overdo it, keep hydrated, and stay in a cool place as much as possible.  

We also all know how dangerous this kind of heat can be for any person or animal left in a car. In case you were worried, all cars assigned to our Canine Section are equipped with "hot dog" systems to keep the dogs inside cool while their officer partners are out of the vehicle.

Kansas City residents always step up in times of crisis, and we ask that you do the same during this deadly heat wave (the Jackson County Health Department has reported 10 heat-related deaths so far this year). Keep an eye on your frail friends and family during this time, and if you or someone you know needs a break from the heat, get to a cooling center.

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