City Pools Waive Admission Fee In The Midst Of Heat Wave

With temperatures rising into the mid-90s and heat indices broaching 105 degrees, the National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat advisory for much of Ohio until eight o’clock tonight. In Columbus many people take to public pools to stay cool.

At least 200 people were expected go through the gates at Tuttle Pool in Columbus as part of Operation Get Wet.

“Where there’s three or more consecutive 90 degree days, the mayor and the head of Parks and Rec says to open up the doors and let people in,” Jones said.

Tom Jones, who works at Tuttle Pool, said the 50 cent admission fee is waived during extreme heat.

Kitt Lockett said she and her two sons come to the pool several times during the summer.

“It’s not an every week thing. They’re 12 and 13 so they have other interests as well, skateboarding, but it was too hot to do that today,” Lockett said. Kelli Dickoff said a day off from work was the main reason she and her husband brought their five children to the pool. But Dickoff said the excessive heat has meant less outdoor playtime for her children.

“We’ve just played in the house in the late afternoon when it’s really hot and try to go out in the morning,” Dickoff said.

And that’s just what the Columbus Public Health Department suggests: to limit outdoor activities after 10 a.m. during excessive heat. The health department’s medical director, Mysheika LeMaile-Williams, says everyone should stay hydrated, especially children and people older than 60.

“Even inside with their air conditioner on they can become very hydrated just from the elements outside. So we encourage everyone to drink plenty of fluids and that would be water, preferably, sports drinks would be a second choice,” LaMaile-Williams said.

The health department’s communications director, Jose Rodriguez, said a visit to the local library or the mall is a free way for people to stay cool if air conditioning is unavailable to them.

With greater air conditioning usage is the threat of power outages. But American Electric Spokesperson, Vikki Michalski, said there is a sufficient supply to meet customers’ needs.

“In hot weather they can set their air conditioning thermostats at 78 degrees and use ceiling fans to circulate the cool air,” Michalski said.

Forecasters do not expect any relief from the stifling heat until Thursday.

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