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Heat Wave Hits Harrison, Causes Power Concerns

HARRISON, N.Y. - Temperatures across Westchester County inched toward dangerous levels Thursday at the start of another anticipated three-day heat wave. As power outages become a growing concern, Harrison Mayor Joan Walsh said residents can find refuge at the town's libraries and senior centers to cool off.

Temperatures are expected to reach as high as 95 degrees Thursday, according to the National Weather Service . The heat wave continues into the weekend with a high of 99 degrees on Friday and 94 degrees Saturday before dipping to 88 degrees Sunday.

Though the town has no official cooling centers, Walsh said local libraries and senior centers operate throughout the day and can act as the impromptu cooling centers.

"That's where the people are going," Walsh said.

Harrison has declared official cooling centers in the past at locations such as the local fire departments and recreation centers, but Walsh said they weren't utilized enough to continue the trend.

The downtown Harrison library is located at 2 Bruce Avenue and the West Harrison library can be found at 2 Madison St. in West Harrison.

The downtown library is open Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturdays from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The West Harrison library is open Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

A senior center can be found downtown at the Veterans Memorial Building at 210 Halstead Ave.

According to Elizabeth Matthews, a spokesperson for Consolidated Edison , some of the best ways to save electricity when running your air conditioner are the simplest.

“Change your air conditioner’s filter,” she said. “Clean filters make for peak efficiency.”

Turn off lights and other appliances when not in use. Not only does that cut electricity usage, it also cuts down on things that can heat up your house.

Appliances such as dishwashers, dryers and ovens should be used in the morning when it’s generally a little bit cooler.

The all-time peak demand for electricity in the metro-area was Aug. 2, 2006, when 13,141 megawatts were drawn from the system. ConEdison expects demand for electricity to hover between 11,000 and 13,000 megawatts. As of 2 p.m. Wednesday, demand for electricity was 11,600 megawatts.

How are you beating the heat? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter .

E-mail town reporter Phil Corso at .

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