GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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June 26, 2013

'Cooling' sites outlined for beating the heat

Cape Ann has only been officially enjoying summer for a few days.

Yet there have already been a number of people shipped to Addison Gilbert Hospital for heat stroke and heat related problems.

Although rain and thunderstorms are expected to shower Cape Ann throughout the rest of the week according to the National Weather Service, Monday and Tuesday proved to be too much for some beach goers.

One Long Beach visitor was transported from the Rockport side of the beach at 4:20 p.m. Monday for heat stroke, police said. Others have been transported from Gloucester’s Good Harbor Beach, according to police reports.

In order to combat the heat waves, Cape Ann communities are urging people to take the proper precautions.

As always, the best ways to stay safe are to dress appropriately, stay in the coolest place you can, and drink plenty of water.

Other ways to stay cool include eating properly, as meats and proteins can increase water loss, and limiting the use of alcohol or caffeine, according to Noreen Burke, Gloucester’s Public Health Director.

“It really makes a difference,” she said. “I’d also like to urge people to slow down and take frequent breaks,”

Anyone in the city looking to cool off can head to the Sawyer Free Library or to the Rose Baker Senior Center, Burke said, noting that both have air conditioning.

Mayor Carolyn Kirk said that, in general, the city does not operate a designated cooling center unless requests have been made or a heat wave exceeds three days.

“The chances are, we probably won’t,” she said, noting that at least some break toward cooler temperatures is expected late today, and into the rest of the week.

Pavilion shut down

Those hoping to cool off at Pavilion Beach Tuesday and early today, however, will have to make other plans; the city of Gloucester closed the beach to swimming after sewers overflowed in the wake of Monday night’s heavy rains.

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