Consecutive days of abnormally high temperatures to scorch the Island

Nassau County opens cooling centers


The potential for the first heatwave of the year is set to impact the area this week with temperatures nearing the mid 90s.

A hazardous weather outlook is in effect for all of Nassau County from Tuesday through Sunday, as the heat index, which is what the temperature feels like to the human body or “real feel,” will soar into the 90s. The heat index on Wednesday is expected to be in the upper 80s to lower 90s, the lower to mid 90s on Thursday, and 95 to 99 degrees on Friday. The maximum heat index will occur between noon and 8 p.m. of each day. 

A heat wave is defined as 3 or more consecutive days of 90°F or higher, with the last heat wave occurring in September of 2023. According to Joe Pollina, meteorologist at the National Weather Service, most of Long Island doesn’t fit under that criteria. However, temperatures will be about 10 to 15 degrees above normal for this time of year, which poses an increased risk of heat-related illnesses.

“Try to do any activities during the morning or later in the evening,” Pollina said. “Avoid the hottest part of the day and do most of your work outside the afternoon hours.”

Pollina said if you have to be outside during the middle of the day, drink a lot of water. He also noted to wear lightweight clothing and light colored clothing. He said the most important thing to beat the hot weather is to try to remain in air conditioning during the hottest part of the day.

“Always check your car before you leave and don’t leave pets and children in the car,” Pollina said. “Bring pets inside, especially during the hottest part of the day, and make sure you also give them plenty of water.”

County Executive Bruce Blakeman said at a news conference on Monday that cooling centers across the county will be open during the upcoming “hazy, hot, and humid” weather. The centers will be open starting on Wednesday, June 19..

The Mitchel Field Administration Building, at 1 Charles Lindbergh Blvd. in Uniondale, will be open 24 hours a day. 

Nickerson Beach and its pools at 880 Lido Blvd. in Lido Beach in Lido Beach are open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of this week will remain open until 8 p.m. for an extra hour of cooling time.

The Cantiague Park administration office in Hicksville at 480 W John Street will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Wantagh administration building 1 King Road in Wantagh will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The swimming pool at Wantagh Park will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

County pools at North Woodmere Park at 75O Hungry Harbor Road in Valley Stream  and Cantiague Park will be open by June 24. They could be open sooner, according to Blakeman, depending on if the staff of predominantly college students can return in time.

In order to “beat the heat,” Town of Hempstead beaches — which normally close at 6 p.m. — are open to 7 p.m. throughout the heat wave’s duration. Pools, like the ones in Veterans Memorial Park, normally close at 7 p.m., and are also open one additional hour, closing at 8 p.m. 

“It’s a great opportunity for when the kids are getting out of school, maybe you’re getting out of work a little bit late, to beat the heat,” Don Clavin, Town of Hempstead supervisor, said. “These are generally temperatures we see in July and August, but we want to do right by the residents who do right by us.” 

It’s not just the pools and beaches that people can visit to cool down, Clavin said. Senior Centers around the municipality will also serve as cooling centers, and are open from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Times may be adjusted, according to the temperature outside.

Senior centers in Baldwin, Bellmore, Elmont, Franklin Square, Levittown, Oceanside, Roosevelt and Salisbury are all operating as cooling centers. 

With such warm weather, Clavin advised exercising caution, by doing things like wearing sunscreen, and monitoring your time outside. 

“Be prepared,” he said. “Make sure you’re hydrated and in addition to that, let’s not forget about our little ones — our dogs and our cats. Don’t leave them outside. Temperatures are going to be extreme. Make sure that they have water and some shade as well. 

“It’s a transition week,” he added. “You have a lot of schools that are either going full down to half day. We want to make sure you’re aware of it. You have your options here at the beaches, at our pools.”