Mayor activates heat emergency plan ahead of extreme heat


Photo: KXAN

WASHINGTON (WDVM) — District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser activated the District’s heat emergency plan ahead of high temperatures and heat index forecast for the beginning of the week. Through the plan, the District Government, the Department of Human Services and the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency are activating cooling centers for residents who need relief from the heat.

Some cooling centers are available during regular business hours, while others are open specifically when a heat emergency is declared. Click here for an interactive map that will direct you to the closest cooling center. If you or someone you know needs transportation to a cooling center, please call the shelter hotline at (202) 399-7093.

The Downtown Day Center, which operates at 1313 New York Avenue Northwest, is open at a limited capacity for those experiencing homelessness. It is open every day from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., with limited services such as restrooms, bottled water and snacks. There is no appointment to stop by.

District spray parks are also open every day through Monday, September 6, from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Low-barrier shelters operate year-round for residents. There are separate shelters for men and women.

Men’s low-barrier shelters:

  • 801 East Shelter at Making Life Better Lane, SE
  • Adams Place Shelter at 2210 Adams Place, NE
  • Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) at 425 Second Street, NW
  • New York Avenue Shelter at 1355-57 New York Avenue, NE
  • Pat Handy Legacy Shelter at 810 Fifth Street, NW
  • Salvation Army at 3335 Sherman Avenue, NW

Women’s low-barrier shelters:

  • Adams Place Day Center at 2210 Adams Place, NE  
  • Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) at 425 Second Street, NW
  • Harriet Tubman Shelter for Women – DC General Building 9 at 1900 Massachusetts Avenue, SE
  • Patricia Handy Place for Women Extension at 1009 11th Street, NW

Families seeking emergency shelter may call the Mayor’s Citywide Call Center by dialing 311 at any time, day or night. 

To protect yourself from extreme heat, it is important to stay indoors when possible or find places with shade or air-conditioning. It is also important to check on neighbors such as young children and the elderly. Increasing water intake can prevent some side effects of extreme heat. Finally, be sure to wear sunscreen and lightweight, loose-fitting, light-colored clothing.

People with pets are encouraged to keep them indoors, walk them early in the morning and make sure the animals have plenty of water. Never leave pets in vehicles, as the temperature can reach dangerous temperatures in just a few minutes.

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