Cooling stations open up to help combat hot weather

Updated: Jun. 23, 2017 at 8:52 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - For those who need to beat the heat this weekend there are 13 cooling stations throughout Tucson.

One of those is at St. Francis shelter at 601 E. Fort Lowell.

The cooling stations have been organized by the Tucson Pima Coalition to End Homelessness, however the shelter is open to anyone who might need it, or they just need a place to cool down.

Other cooling stations include The Main Library, the Veterans Administration and the Sister Jose Women's Shelter.

While the St. Francis shelter is generally a homeless shelter, it is open to everyone who might need to escape the heat, or who has a malfunctioning air conditioner or worst of all, has no air conditioning.

"It doesn't matter where you are from, or your socio-economic background, spirituality, religion or whatever, you're welcome," said Carl Zawatski, shelter director.

Most of the shelters are open during the day and many stay open till 6 p.m.

Wondering where the closest cooling station to you is?  Check out the list here:

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The chances of needing a shelter this summer are likely greater than in other years.

The heat Tucson is experiencing, according to the National Weather Service, is different than most years because there is no cool down period to give the body the ability to cool down.

Temperatures even on the hottest days will often drop down into the 70s, but this year they have remained in the 80s or 90s.

That is also causing a concern for Tucson Electric Power because of the chances for equipment failure.

"It essentially comes down to us versus mother nature," said TEP Spokesperson Joe Barrios. "Sometimes mother nature is going to win."

While the number of outages this hot summer so far have been small and localized, the longer it stays hot though, the better the chances get.

"There's no such thing as an electrical system that is impervious to damage over time in the heat we've seen," he said.

Barrios suggests that even if a household experiences a mild outage, which doesn't last long, it may be a good idea to let TEP know.

"The more information we have the better," he said.

That number to call about the outages is 520-623-7711.

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