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“The District’s public COVID-19 testing sites, including the downtown and Anacostia sites and firehouse locations, will be closed” today due to the high heat

Photo by angela n.

From the Mayor’s Office:

“Due to dangerously hot temperatures, on Monday, July 20, the District’s public COVID-19 testing sites, including the downtown and Anacostia sites and firehouse locations, will be closed. Residents are encouraged to call their health care providers if they are in need of a test.

Additionally, the District’s grocery distribution sites will be closed. Free meal sites across the city will remain open for all in need, and a list of meal site locations and hours can be found at

Mayor Muriel Bowser has activated the District’s Heat Emergency Plan for Saturday, July 18 through Wednesday, July 22. When the forecast of the temperature or heat index in the District is 92 degrees or higher, the District Government, through the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA), activates a heat emergency as well as cooling centers for residents to seek relief from the heat.

Cooling Centers:

Select recreation centers, public schools, and homeless shelters will open as cooling centers each day from 11:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m., or until it has been deemed safe to be outdoors, through Wednesday, July 22. If you or someone you know needs transportation to a cooling center, call the hyperthermia hotline at (202) 399-7093. Residents can find their closest cooling center using the District’s interactive map.

In an effort to decrease community spread of COVID-19 in the District, cooling centers have adopted the following safeguards:

  • Individuals entering cooling centers are required to wear a mask or face covering while inside the facility.
  • Individuals who do not have a face mask or covering when entering a District cooling center will be provided one.
  • Upon entering a District cooling center, individuals will be directed to an open seat that is marked off to indicate required social distancing measures.

For information about services provided during extreme heat, visit or call the Mayor’s Citywide Call Center by dialing 311.

Extreme Heat Safety Precautions:

The public can limit heat exposure by:

  • Staying indoors when possible;
  • Drinking plenty of liquids and avoiding drinks with caffeine and alcohol;
  • Limiting sun exposure, especially between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., when the sun is the strongest;
  • Applying sunscreen at least 20 minutes before going outdoors; and
  • Wearing light-colored, lightweight clothing.

For all animal emergencies, including animals left outside in extreme heat or in vehicles, call the Humane Rescue Alliance at (202) 576-6664.

Unauthorized use of fire hydrants is unlawful, dangerous and damaging. To report a fire hydrant that has been tampered with, call 311.

Low-Barrier Shelters:

The Downtown Daytime Services Center (1313 New York Avenue, NW) is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. by appointment only.

Low-Barrier shelters for individuals operate year-round. Due to high temperatures, low-barrier shelters will be open all day.


  • New York Avenue Shelter at 1355-57 New York Avenue, NE
  • 801 East Shelter at 801 Making Life Better Lane, SE
  • Adams Place Shelter at 2210 Adams Place, NE


  • Nativity Shelter at 6010 Georgia Avenue, NW
  • Harriet Tubman, DC General Building #27 at 1900 Massachusetts Avenue, SE
  • Patricia Handy Place for Women at 810 5th Street, NW
  • Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) at 425 2nd Street, NW

Families seeking emergency shelter can call 311 at any time day or night. When the District Government is open, families may also visit the Virginia Williams Family Resource Center at 920 Rhode Island Avenue, NE, Monday – Thursday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.”

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