Brian Walker, Communications Manager, 509.655.1387 & Amanda Donovan, Director of Marketing and Communications, 509.444.5319
Monday, August 14, 2023 at 8:55 a.m.
All residents are reminded that cooling resources are available to help them chill out in Spokane during heat waves, including the one predicted by the National Weather Service today through Thursday.
Six Spokane Public Library locations throughout the city and available to provide indoor cooling areas for anyone seeking relief from hot temperatures being forecast.
Library locations include: Central (906 W. Main St.), Shadle Park (2111 W. Wellesley Ave.), Liberty Park (402 S. Pittsburg St.), Hillyard (4110 N. Cook St.), South Hill Library (3324 S. Perry St.) and Indian Trail (4909 W. Barnes Road). Libraries are open 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday. The library locations have the capacity to serve 2,118 adults and children throughout the City.
Cool spaces, hydration resources, restrooms, and wi-fi connectivity are available in all spaces serving as cooling areas. In addition, libraries offer books, interactive play areas, programs and neighborhood accessibility.
The Trent Resource and Assistance Center, 4320 E. Trent Ave., also offers cool space, three meals a day, supplemental hydration resources and snacks for those seeking shelter during heat waves. TRAC also offers wrap-around services for those in need. Shelters throughout the city report their occupancy data on the sheltermespokane.org website, where resources are also listed. Capacity at TRAC can be flexed to serve as many as 400 people during hazardous weather.
City code states cooling areas for homeless individuals should be available when temperatures are forecast by NWS to reach 95 degrees or higher for two or more days, but anyone is welcome to access the resources. Heat was the leading weather-related cause of deaths in the nation in 2022, according to NWS. City emergency responders will check on people who are outside during hazardous weather.
How you can help
The City is seeking donations of bottled water, Gatorade/Powerade, other caffeine-free hydration drinks, mini sunscreen products and single pack snacks for current and future extreme weather events. Powder that is mixed with water goes farther than pre-mixed hydration drinks. Those interested in donating can email Director of Emergency Management Sarah Nuss at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for pick-up. Donations are being accepted throughout August.
Meals on Wheels Spokane, 1222 W. Second Ave., is accepting new or unopened fans for homebound senior citizens.
Check on your neighbors, friends, and family during heat waves. If you can help someone, please do.
Public transportation options
Spokane Transit Authority will offer fare exceptions to riders going to and from a cooling space when the temperature is 95 degrees or above. If a passenger boards a bus and indicates they do not have fare payment, and that they are traveling to a cooling area, STA will allow them to ride for free. This practice remains in effect for same-day return trips during evening hours even after the temperature drops below 95 degrees. Cooling areas are accessible by most Spokane Transit routes.
Additionally, The Salvation Army offers vans that can meet people where they are at and help them connect to local shelters. Call 509-280-6860 or 509-280-6894 for a ride.
Other cooling options
Spokane Parks & Recreation splash pads and malls are other great places to cool down for free. The splash pads are operational daily from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. at 19 parks. Most parks also have drinking fountains to access water. The public amenities in Riverfront Park can offer indoor places to cool down while visiting. For daily hours, visit the Riverfront calendar.
Heat wave resources
Gonzaga University’s Center for Climate, Society and the Environment lists regional cooling resources, including an interactive map of drinking fountains, cooling areas, splash pads, parks and pools.
Additional resources and information are available through:
Residents are urged to drink water to stay hydrated, wear light-colored clothing, apply sunscreen and to not leave kids or pets in vehicles.
The City continues to monitor National Weather Service Spokane information and will respond according to the level of severity designated in its Emergency Management protocols as conditions change.