NC county’s homeless left in high heat despite health risks

North Carolina

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina county hasn’t opened a summer cooling center since 2012, despite high temperatures that have reached 100 degrees.

Mecklenburg County manager Dena Diorio tells The Charlotte Observer that there just hasn’t been a need, but the city’s homeless residents say otherwise. James Morgan says he’s suffered three heat strokes since he’s been homeless. His friend, Kenney Walker, says he peruses grocery stores to escape the heat, but he can only do that for so long.

The Department of Homeland Security says a 2- to 3-day streak of 90-degree temperatures means people should find air-conditioned areas to avoid heat exhaustion and stroke. Charlotte averages over two weeks of above 90-degree weather in July. Other localities across the U.S. offer snacks, water, and nurses in addition to cooling centers.

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