‘Cooked — Survival by ZIP Code’ to be shown at Edmonds United Methodist Church July 14

Headlines from the deadly 1995 Chicago heatwave

The community is invited to a screening of Cooked — Survival by ZIP Code at noon Sunday, July 14 at Edmonds United Methodist Church, 828 Caspers, in Edmonds. There is no charge, but registrations are requested at this link: edmondsumc.breezechms.com/form/3dd4b788

This film chronicles the five-day heat wave in Chicago in 1995 in which 739 elderly, poor and mostly African American residents died as a result of the heat, which — with a combination of pollution, humidity and air temperature — reached 126 degrees.

According to the announcement of the film screening:

It is clear from charts, maps, and diagrams that the majority of victims in Chicago were concentrated in neighborhoods where many people did not dare to open their windows because they were afraid of intruders. They could not turn on the air conditioner because they did not have air conditioning. They could not go to the air-conditioned library or grocery store because there was no such library or grocery store in their neighborhood. They were also much more likely to be suffering from pre-existing conditions that were exacerbated by the heat because they did not have access to the quality of life and health care many of us take for granted.

Studies afterward identified steps that Chicago, and other cities, could have taken, and should taken to prevent such disasters. So far very few communities around the U.S. have taken the advice and experience from Chicago, in order to save the lives of these vulnerable residents.

One reason this film is so critical is that extreme heat is the number-one weather-related cause of death in the U.S., and kills more people most years that hurricanes, floods, and tornadoes combined.

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