Beating the sweltering heat

By Stefano DiPietrantonio – bio |email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Good luck finding a public cooling shelter open anywhere Monday.

Most of the city's recreation centers that double as cooling shelters were closed because of the holiday.

In Price Hill, some folks found ways to keep cool in one of the city's public pools.

Most public pools around the city were open and the pool in Price Hill closed at 7:30 p.m., perfect for folks to beat the heat before the sun went down.

Monday was definitely a day to take a plunge. Public pools across the city are open and are a smart way to keep your body cool in the extreme heat.

"Hit the backstroke," yelled Pool Manager Joe Martin, as he put the pool's swim team through their paces in the blazing afternoon sun.

"We learn a lot of stuff this year, we learn breaststroke, backstroke, freestyle, butterfly," said swimmer Derrick Ferguson.

"I take a break," said Majesty Hampton. "I stay in the pool for about 3 hours and get out."

"Freestyle! Ready, set, go!," said Martin as the kids lined-up in the pool. They really get a workout .

"Yeah," Martin said. "If you've been outside and you're swimming around, it's hard to believe but you still can get dehydrated."

The pool opens at 1 p.m. and Cincinnati Public Schools provides a free lunch by 1:15 p.m.. On Monday, July 5, however, there was no lunch due to the holiday. The lunch includes a meal with drinks, so the kids are fed and well-hydrated.

"These kids are sometimes a handful," laughed Martin, who has seen as many as 200 kids in a day.

"Sometimes I've been out of the water for awhile and it gets really hot," he said. "Even lifeguards need to stay cool too."

And that means wearing sunscreen and keeping covered-up like lifeguard Sam, whom we found under an umbrella and wearing a t-shirt to keep shielded from the sun. He keeps his eyes glued to the pool. The smog alert means lifeguards are looking for even more problems.

"Some of the kids, while they're swimming laps they get asthma," Martin said. "We tell them to take a break, grab on the side of the wall, catch their breath, make sure that they're breathing right. We try to teach them how to take strokes and breath at the same time."

"What are we working with right here?" asked Doris Gordon, who has manned the pool gate for more than a decade.

"It's hot!" she laughed. She has spent a lot of time outside in the sun.

"Yeah, I make sure they get some water and stuff to drink."

She treats the many kids she sees come through the gate, as if they were her own.

"Because they don't know they're dehydrated once they're in the pool, they're kids," she laughed.

And it is not just the kids, if you have neighbors who are elderly you've got to check-in on them as well. Take little steps to help everyone keep it safe and keep cool, during this blazing hot summer week ahead.

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