Frazier Park, Lake of the Woods, Cuddy Valley, CA (Wednesday, July 21, 2021 at 2 p.m.)— The Cooling Center in Frazier Mountain Park’s Community Center (3801 Park Drive in Frazier Park) will be open to all Mountain Community residents on days when the temperature is predicted to rise to 93 degrees Fahrenheit. Formerly the “criteria temperature” was 95ºF. This news came in as we are going to press this week.
By Patric Hedlund, TME
The Mountain Enterprise has been expressing concern to Kern County officials, and to members of the Mountain Communities Collaborative, about the local Cooling Center being closed when every other facility in Kern County has been open this July. In several documented cases, the temperature was predicted by the National Weather Service to be 93ºF, but then rose to 97ºF by midday—leaving the center closed and sensitive people with no place to find reliefF
We are facing a climate anomoly, and it can be dangerous.
British Columbia reports that 800 people died during their June 26-July 1 heat wave three weeks ago. We know that August and September in these Mountain Communties are often hotter than in July.
The Mountain Enterprise asked Frazier Mountain Community Health Center’s Dr. Brent Burket if rising temperatures presented increased stress here for those with breathing and heart complications, because at higher elevations oxygen molecules are more disbursed (due to lower barometric pressure), leading to less oxygen per breath. He agreed that the impact of heat at higher elevation on his patients—seniors especially, with breathing and cardiopulmonary complications— is greater here. This is made even more dangerous because other sections of Kern County typically build residential units with some kind of air conditioning. This area has not, because these temperatures are not normal for this region.
On days when NWS predicts 93º F temperatures, the center will be open 1-8 p.m.
People are advised to wear masks and observe social distancing. Bring water, snacks, books, games and things to help you be comfortable.
We appreciate Kern County’s Aging & Adult Services, Lindsay Call, the Mountain Communities Collaborative, volunteers from AARP, Meals on Wheels and other community groups such as the Chamber of Commerce and District 2 Supervisor Scrivner’s office for their response to these concerns for the health and comfort of our neighbors.
This is part of the July 16, 2021 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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