According to centralmaine.com, the Maine Emergency Management Agency is opening cooling centers across the state to help keep Mainers healthy in the sweltering heat.

The combination of high heat and high humidity can be dangerous. Especially to young children, babies, the elderly and pets.

Anyone in need of relief from the heat today should follow this link for a full listing of cooling centers.

Signs of heat related illness include:

  • headache
  • high body temperature
  • confusion
  • dry or moist hot, red skin
  • unconsciousness
  • vomiting
  • rapid pulse, rapid breathing

If someone is showing these signs, get them out of the sun right away and cool them down with a fan, A/C, cold wet cloths or ice. Slowly feed them cool water. Call 911 immediately if they refuse to drink, seem confused or become unconscious.

The elderly are more vulnerable to heat illnesses because it's harder for their bodies to control internal temperatures, they might not have air conditioning, they might have health problems and prescription medications can make things worse.

Don't leave pets or kids in a vehicle for any amount of time or for any reason. Don't walk your dog on the hot pavement. If it's too hot for you to walk barefoot, it's too hot for their paws!

Visit the Maine Emergency Management Agency website for a full list, or call 211 for a cooling center location near you.