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The original item was published from 7/16/2019 12:24:10 PM to 7/23/2019 12:00:16 AM.

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Posted on: July 16, 2019

[ARCHIVED] Cooling Centers Available to Help Residents and Visitors Cope with Heat


The National Weather Service is forecasting high temperatures and heat indices for the James City County area this week.

Cooling Centers
Need a place to cool off? Citizens and visitors can head to the James City County Recreation Center (5301 Longhill Road, hours), the Human Services Center (5249 Olde Towne Road, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.), the Williamsburg Library (515 Scotland Street, hours) or the James City County Library (7770 Croaker Road, hours). The centers and libraries serve as the County's designated Cooling Centers, and provide air conditioning and a place to sit down. With the exception of service animals, pets are not allowed in the Cooling Centers. For more information, please call 757-259-4200.

Safety Tips
- Drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the sun and check up on relatives and neighbors.

- Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. When possible, reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Wear light weight and loose fitting clothing when possible and drink plenty of water.

- To reduce risk during outdoor work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke is an emergency - call 911.

Assistance Programs
The Commonwealth of Virginia Cooling Assistance Program and the Peninsula Agency on Aging Senior Cool Care Program (Sponsored by Dominion Energy) also offer cooling assistance to eligible residents.

Commonwealth of Virginia Cooling Assistance
Social Services will accept applications for the Commonwealth of Virginia Cooling Assistance program, available to eligible citizens through Aug. 15. Cooling Assistance helps with cooling equipment repairs or purchases and with payment of the electric bill to operate cooling equipment. To be eligible, you must be in need of cooling equipment, and the household must include an elderly person, a disabled person, or a child under six.

All benefits are based on availability of funds. In order to be eligible, certain citizenship criteria must be met and a household's monthly income must be less than the maximum allowed for the number of people in the home (see "Am I Eligible?" on the Virginia CommonHelp website).

You can access applications online, by calling 855-635-4370, or by visiting your local department of social services. The James City County Department of Social Services is located at 5249 Olde Towne Road, Williamsburg, VA 23188.

Peninsula Agency on Aging Senior Cool Care Program (Sponsored by Dominion Energy)
This program offers box fans AC units for eligible residents:

- Must be 60 years of age or older
- Must need additional cooling in the home
- Must meet household income requirements
- Less than $1,561 per month for 1 person
- Less than $2,114 per month for 2 people

For more information about the Senior Cool Care Program, call 757-873-0541.

Media Contact:
Renee Dallman, Public Information Officer

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