The National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Watch for Mercer County and the surrounding area from Wednesday morning, July 17, through Sunday evening, July 21, and County Executive Brian M. Hughes is reminding residents that many cooling sites are open. An Excessive Heat Watch means that a prolonged period of hot temperatures is expected, with hot temperatures and high humidity combining to create a dangerous situation in which heat illnesses are possible.
To cope during extreme heat, drink plenty of water, even if you are not thirsty, and spend as much time as possible in an air-conditioned environment. Be sure to check on elderly relatives and neighbors.
Hot weather can impact everyone, regardless of age or condition, but some people are more at risk than others. People most at risk include those over age 65, individuals with medical conditions, those taking medications that may affect the way the body reacts to heat, people with disabilities, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers, babies and young children, those who are overweight or obese, individuals who work or exercise outdoors, and even those residents who may have recently arrived from cooler climates. Never leave children, pets or anyone with limited mobility alone in hot vehicles. Even with the windows rolled down, only minutes in a hot car can be deadly.
Mercer County also offers designated cooling sites including all municipal senior centers and all Mercer County Library System branches. Call individual locations for daily hours of operation. These locations are open to all residents.
The following Mercer County library branches are cooling sites: Ewing, 61 Scotch Road; Hickory Corner, 138 Hickory Corner Road, East Windsor; Hightstown Memorial, 114 Franklin St.; Hollowbrook, 320 Hollowbrook Drive, Ewing; Hopewell, 245 Pennington-Titusville Road, Pennington; Lawrence Headquarters Branch, 2751 Brunswick Pike; Robbinsville, 42 Allentown-Robbinsville Road; Twin Rivers, 276 Abbington Drive, East Windsor; and West Windsor, 333 North Post Road.
The following senior centers are cooling sites: East Windsor Senior Center, 40 Lanning Blvd.; Hollowbrook Community Center, 320 Hollowbrook Drive, Ewing; Ewing Senior and Community Center, 999 Lower Ferry Road; Hamilton Senior Center, 409 Cypress Lane; Hopewell Valley Senior Center, 395 Reading St., Pennington; Jennye W. Stubblefield Senior Center, 301 Prospect St., Trenton; John O. Wilson Neighborhood Center, 169 Wilfred Ave., Hamilton; Lawrence Township Senior Center, 30 Darrah Lane East; Princeton Senior Resource Center, Suzanne Patterson Building, 45 Stockton St.; Reading Senior Citizens Center, 15 Ringold St., Trenton; Samuel Naples Senior Center, 611 Chestnut Ave., Trenton; South Ward Senior Center, 870 South Broad St., Trenton; Robbinsville Township Senior Center, 1117 Route 130; and West Windsor Senior Center, 271 Clarksville Road.
For assistance in coping with the heat or to contact your local cooling site, please call the Mercer County Office on Aging at (609) 989-6661 or toll-free (877) 222-3737. During non-business hours, residents are encouraged to call 911 if they experience heat-related problems.
For more information regarding heat-related emergencies, please visit www.ready.nj.gov, the National Weather Service Heat Safety Tips and Resourcespage or the National Institute on Aging Hot Weather Safety page.