Local News

Fayetteville radio station helps provide heat relief for some residents

Posted July 9

— Fayetteville radio station WFNC-AM 640 has spent 20 years collecting box fans in an effort to help provide a bit of relief from the heat.

With the city's high temperature reaching 99 degrees, according to the National Weather Service, Wednesday was a good reminder why.

"I'm really happy that we can help, mostly seniors," radio host Gold, of the morning show, Good Morning Fayetteville said. "There are a lot of people on medication that can't go out in the heat, and these are folks who sometimes don't have air-conditioning."

Since July 1, nearly three dozen people have nearly three dozen have been treated at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville for heat-related injuries and illnesses.

"What we're experiencing is people being exposed because they are out in the mid-day," Fayetteville Fire Capt. Ronnie Willet said. "Anywhere from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. is going to be the hottest part of the day."

Experts say the very young and very old are most at risk for heat-related injuries.

A $20 box fan is not an air conditioner, but for someone with no other way of keeping cool, it's priceless.

"Usually, per year, we (give away) anywhere between 300 and 500 fans," Goldy said. "That's a lot of fans that we've gotten over to the Department of Social Services."

The Cumberland County Department of Social Services collects donations of new box fans for distribution to residents who have incomes 200 percent below the current poverty level and who have a child under 2, adult over 60 or someone with a heat-sensitive medical condition living in the home.

Anyone wanting a fan can apply with the Department of Social Services' Adult Services section, at 1225 Ramsey St.

Fans can also be donated there on weekdays between 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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