With stiflingly hot temperatures predicted for the Fourth of July in Lexington, emergency management officials are calling for caution and opening cooling centers to help people beat the heat.
The National Weather Service office in Louisville has issued a heat advisory for Wednesday and forecasts temperatures up to 95 degrees. The heat index this week could climb past 100 degrees, according to Lexington Emergency Management.
All city pools and aquatic centers will offer half price admission Wednesday for people looking to cool off, according to emergency management.
While temperatures are not expected to reach the high of 95 degrees until afternoon, it will likely already be 75 degrees or hotter and feel like 79 by 7 a.m. when the Bluegrass 10K is scheduled to begin, according to The Weather Channel. When the parade begins at 2 p.m., temperatures could be 93 degrees or hotter, with a heat index of 101 degrees.
Things will cool off slightly by the time fireworks begin at 10 p.m., but forecasts predict the heat index could remain in the 90s, according to The Weather Channel.
For people who will be out in the heat for Fourth of July celebrations on Wednesday, it is important to stay hydrated and watch for signs of heat exhaustion. Symptoms include cool, moist skin with goose bumps when out in the heat, heavy sweating, feeling faint, dizziness, nausea or headache, according to the Mayo Clinic.
People planning on attending events downtown Wednesday with their dogs in tow also need to be conscious of the heat.
The Humane Society of the United States warns pet owners not to leave their furry friends in parked cars, as temperatures can rise to dangerous levels quickly on a hot day. The humane society also advises limiting exercise for dogs, providing plenty of food and water, and watching for signs of heat exhaustion and stroke, which can include heavy panting, glazed eyes, rapid pulse, difficulty breathing, excessive drooling, excessive thirst and vomiting.
The city will also have several cooling centers open Wednesday, including the Dunbar Community Center at 545 North Upper Street, which will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the Tates Creek Golf Course at 1400 Gainesway Drive from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and the Gay Brewer Jr. Golf Course at 469 Parkway Drive.
The Lexington Senior Center at 195 Life Lane, which is behind Southland Christian Church on Richmond Road, will also be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Lextran is giving free rides to people who need to get to any of the cooling centers, according to emergency management.
Anyone else needing assistance during the heat can call 2-1-1, text their zip code to 898211 or visit the United Way website for more information, according to emergency management.