We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is a Cooling Center?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
About Mechanics is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At About Mechanics, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A cooling center is a facility open to members of the public where people can come in and cool off during hot weather. Cooling centers are very important in hot, humid communities where there is a risk of heat stroke in severe weather, especially when older and disabled citizens are present, as they are less able to adapt to the heat. In the event of power outages, cooling centers can become the only comfortable space for individuals who cannot maintain safe conditions at home.

The cooling center is usually a public building repurposed for this use, as it operates only when necessary and does not need to be a dedicated environment. Community centers, libraries, gymnasiums, and other large buildings with capacity for big groups are suitable for use as cooling centers. The center uses built-in air conditioning to keep temperatures cool and may supplement with fans to maintain air circulation and keep everyone comfortable.

Some communities may create mobile cooling centers with the use of trailers, to make sure that individuals who cannot access public transit or cooling centers in more remote areas will still be able to cool down in the heat. Even half an hour of cool down can make a significant difference when temperatures are climbing. The cooling center may have chairs, couches, and tables for relaxation, and some have games, magazines, and other entertainment to give occupants something to do while they cool down. Fresh cool water is also available.

In the heat, even minimal activity can put people at risk of heatstroke. Citizens may be advised to stay inside if possible, and to avoid traveling during the heat of the day. For residents vulnerable to heat stroke and families living in areas where the power has gone out, moving to a cooling center can be recommended. Some have medical staffs to provide first aid, in the event that someone enters with early signs of heat stroke or other issues.

Residents of regions prone to heat waves should make a note of where the closest cooling center will be in hot weather. If one is not available and the community needs one, public officials should be alerted so they can make plans. Neighbors of older adults and people with significant mobility impairments may also want to consider checking in on their neighbors during extreme heat and cold to see if they need assistance, like a ride to a cooling center.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a About Mechanics researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.