CHESTERTOWN — The Eastern Shore is in the grips of a heat wave.

The National Weather Service reports that high temperatures coupled with high humidity are creating “dangerously hot conditions” this week that will last through the weekend. Temperatures are expected to be in the mid 90s and dew points in the mid 70s, according to the NWS.

The hottest heat index values will happen midday, although temperatures still will be high overnight.

The Kent County Office of Emergency Services has set up cooling centers open to the public. They are located at the Kent County Community Center in Worton and all branches of the Kent County Public Library. The community center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and the libraries’ hours are listed at kentcounty

In Queen Anne’s County, cooling centers are the Kent Island Senior Center, the Grasonville Senior Center, the Kramer Center and the Sudlersville Senior Center. The buildings will be open to the public from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will have ice and water available, according to a news release from the county.

Vulnerable citizens who do not have access to a cool environment can contact the Queen Anne’s Department of Community Services at 410-758-0848.

Excessive heat can cause heat stress during outdoor activities or prolonged sun exposure. Heat-related illnesses include heatstroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps and heat rashes. Older adults, young children, the sick and overweight are most at risk.

Officials say it is important to drink plenty of water; dress in layers; take breaks or limit your time outdoors; check on your neighbors; and give pets extra water.

In the event of an emergency, call 911.

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