Wake County opening cooling centers this weekend; first responders taking cautions as heat surges

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Friday, June 21, 2024
Wake County opening cooling centers this weekend as heat surges
All across the county, there will be places where people can find relief from the summer heat.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Wake County will be opening cooling centers throughout the county this weekend because of the high heat index.

Locations will open Saturday through Monday.

The cooling center locations:

  • Wake County Health & Human Services, 220 Swinburne St., Raleigh
  • Wake County Health & Human Services Center at Departure, 5809 Departure Drive, Raleigh
  • Eastern Regional Center, 1002 Dogwood Drive, Zebulon
  • Northern Regional Center, 350 E. Holding Ave., Wake Forest
  • Southern Regional Center, 130 N. Judd Parkway NE, Fuquay-Varina
  • Wake County Public Libraries - Library Locations

Wake County will open cooling centers this weekend because of the high heat index.

First responders are battling to stay safe while also trying to protect the public during a fire or emergency.

"What we try to do is make sure that our people are not overexposed by staying in that unit too long and we practice and train for this all year round," said Raleigh Fire Health and Safety Compliance Chief Jerry Wilder.

He said the No. 1 thing firefighters can do to stay safe is drink lots of water.

"Hydration really begins at home the day before," Wilder said. "We want people to be drinking lots of water before they come to work, so they don't arrive in a deficit and now they're trying to play catch up once they arrive by drinking water from the 8 a.m. to noon hour."

Last year, a North Carolina state trooper was hospitalized for a heat stroke.

NCSHP spokesperson Sgt. Chris Knox said there is a heightened awareness this summer and cautions are being taken when troopers are out on scenes for several hours.

"(They)have coolers, have drinks that they need, that we have members that cycle in and out on these posts where they're out of their vehicles," said Knox.

Check out the latest weather forecast.