Released on June 30, 2012 - 11:10am
Jun 30
Mayor Craig A. Moe has called for a partial opening of the City of Laurel Emergency Operations Center (EOC) due to the power outages from last night’s storms.  All City departments will coordinate clean up from the EOC. Mayor Moe has asked that Public Works begin going through the City to clean up debris starting this weekend. If you had any limbs fall, please be sure they are no longer than 6 feet long, with a diameter of 3 inches. Be sure to bundle them up and place them on the street ready for pickup.

Because of power outages at both of the City’s pools, these facilities cannot open until the power is back up and pumps are properly circulating and filtering water. Mayor Moe regretfully must close the City Pools until further notice. He wants to assure you that once the power is back up, the pools will open as soon as health regulations permit.  

Because of the power outages throughout the City from last night’s storm along with the National Weather Service issuing an Excessive Heat Watch, Mayor Moe has declared the Laurel Armory Anderson-Murphy Community Center and the Robert J. DiPietro Community Center Cooling Centers. Both centers are now open and have water and air conditioning. Due to regulations, only service animals will be allowed to enter the cooling centers.

Mayor Moe would also like to pass along to the residents of Laurel tips that can help you through the high temperatures and humidity.

Safety Tips

  • Slow down – you should reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities to the coolest time of the day.
  • Dress for summer – Lightweight, light-colored clothing should be worn since it reflects heat and sunlight and helps maintain normal body temperatures.
  • Eat properly – foods such as proteins increase metabolic heat production and can increase water loss.
  • Drink fluids – your body needs lots of water to keep cool, so drink plenty of water or non-alcoholic fluids even if you don’t feel thirsty. However, persons who have epilepsy or heart, kidney or liver disease, who are on restrictive diets or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a physician before increasing their fluid intake.
  • DO NOT drink alcoholic beverages.
  • Stay Indoors – spend more time indoors in air-conditioned places, since this will reduce the danger form the heat and also decrease the chances of sunburn which makes the job of heat dissipation that much more difficult on the human body.

Symptoms and First Aid

  • Sunburn – Redness, pain and in severe cases swelling of skin, blisters, fever and headaches.

    • To treat, use ointments for mild cases and in the more severe cases apply a dry, sterile bandage to blisters and see physician.
  • Heat Cramps – Painful spasm usually in the muscles of legs and abdomen with heavy sweating.

    • To treat, put firm pressure on cramping muscles, gently massage to relieve spasms and take sips of water. However if nausea occurs, discontinue water use.
  • Heat Exhaustion – Heavy sweating, weakness, cold skin, pale and clammy with a thready pulse, fainting and vomiting.

    • To treat, get victim out of the sun, lay them down and loosen clothing. Apply cool, wet cloths and fan victim or get them to an air-conditioned area. Give sips of water and if nausea occurs discontinue water usage. If there is vomiting and it does not subside, get victim immediate medical attention.
  • Heat Stroke – High body temperature of 106 degrees F. or higher, hot and dry skin, a rapid and strong pulse with possible unconsciousness.

    • Treatment should be to immediately summon emergency medical assistance or get victim to a hospital immediately since any delay could be fatal.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

  • Anytime during an extensive heat wave check on elderly or disabled neighbors, fuel your vehicles before sunrise and after sundown and do not use gas-powered tools during daylight hours.

Pets

  • Like you, your dog will appreciate some help battling hot or humid weather. Here are 10 easy tips to keep your dog cool.

    1. To prevent heat exhaustion or heat stroke (possibly death) never leave your dog in a car in the summer heat. Your car is an oven. Temperatures can reach over 120 degrees F. Cracking a window will not help.
    2. Air conditioning is the best way to help your dog stay cool in the warm weather, but if you don't have that luxury, place fans in places where your dog likes to sleep. Window fans set on exhaust will help circulate the air inside your home and keep your dog from heating up.
    3. When taking walks on very hot days put DOGGLES Sunglasses on your dog to protect his eyes, and limit exercise to early morning or evening hours. Pavements get very hot and can burn your pet's paws. If the sidewalk is too hot for you to walk barefoot, it is too hot for your dog to walk on. Bring along water and make frequent water stops for the dog. Don't take long walks or over-exert in the summer. Consider these walks light exercise.
    4. Allow your dog access to cooler rooms of the house, such as the basement, the garage, or a screened porch where there's a breeze.
    5. Buy a kiddie or dog swimming pool and fill it with water for your dog to get into, wet down your dog with a garden hose, place a cool wet towel on your dog for evaporative cooling.
    6. Keep your dog's water dish filled with cool, fresh water. Place ice cubes in the water during the hottest periods of the day. If you have water outside, pound a stake in the ground in his outdoor area. Place an angel food or bun cake pan with an opening in the center over the stake to keep your dog from tipping over the pan. Fill the pan with water.
    7. Older and overweight dogs are more at risk from the heat, so be more sensitive to them in warm weather. Pets need exercise even when it is hot, but extra care needs to be taken with older dogs, overweight dogs, short-nosed dogs, and those with thick coats.
    8. Attach a dog licker to an outdoor faucet or hose in your dog's run. When he's thirsty, he licks the device to get fresh water. The licker can be attached to a hose and extended into your dog's run.
    9. If your dog stays outside in a dog house, make certain the house is placed in the shade. A dog house heated by the summer sun can be almost as deadly as a closed car. Cover the floor with cedar shaving to help retain the moisture in his skin.
    10. Pets can get sunburned too, and your pet may require sunscreen on the nose and ear tips. Pets with light-colored noses or light-colored fur on their ears are particularly vulnerable to sunburn and skin cancer. If you choose to clip your dog, keep in mind that shearing the hair close can leave your dog susceptible to sunburn. More summer heat tips for animals can be found at the ASPCA.

BG&E Energy Saving Tips

  • Close curtains and blinds to keep out sunlight. .
  • Set thermostats at 78 degrees or higher if health allows. Every degree above 72 degrees saves 5 to 7 percent on cooling costs.
  • Delay the use of major, heat-generating household appliances such as ovens, stoves, dishwashers and dryers until after 9 p.m. when the temperature begins to drop.
  • Take shorter hot showers. Heating water is the second biggest energy drain in the home.
  • Turn off non-essential appliances, electronics and other devices.
  • Turn on ceiling fans, with blades rotating counter-clockwise.
  • Use an outdoor grill or microwave instead of the stove or oven.

Mayor Moe has been informed that since the power outages could last as long as 3 days and with the potential for more storms to come through this evening, Mayor Moe asks you to not burn candles. That is a fire hazard and if a candle were to be knocked over, you could have a major fire occur at your home. Use flashlights only.

Mayor Craig A. Moe and the Emergency Operations Director, Marty Flemion, strongly urge residents to follow these tips and in case of emergency, they encourage you to call 911 for help. As soon as more information is available, the City will be sure to inform the residents of any new updates.
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