Volunteers check on local elderly, especially in the heat

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- With yet another hot and steamy day in East Tennessee, Friday made it a week straight in the 90's and the humidity means it feels more like 100 degrees.

But, this weather can be dangerous, no matter your age, or whether you're outside or inside.

A knock at the door is a friendly greeting from regular visitors at Mabel Davis's house. The volunteers are part of the Knox County Sheriff's SCAN program.

John Doggett, SCAN Volunteer, said, "We go out and assist those that are elderly, shut-ins, disabled individuals."

Mabel said, "Every Friday, I look forward to it."

John makes sure the heat doesn't harm the health of the people he visits each week. "One of the things we always check is to make sure they do have fans or operating air conditioners," he said.

He's come across a broken AC and someone who doesn't have water, "And it can become a health issue in a hurry," he said.

The SCAN program needs volunteers, but John says you can do volunteer work in your own neighborhood. "Particularly this time of the year, with the heat and humidity, it's something everyone should do as part of their good nature and being a good neighbor."

To volunteer with SCAN, or to sign a loved one up for the weekly visits, call (865) 215-5627.


Staying inside isn't always an option, especially if you have kids, so a hot spot may actually be the best choice for keeping cool.

Kacie McDougall has a 6-year-old son, so she took him to the World's Fair Park fountains to play. "They can just go run and have fun," she said.

Kacie's son just wants to play outside no matter how hot, so she just keeps him in the water. "We've got one of those little baby pools, but they're too big for one of those little pools, they just want to jump in and jump out," she said.

Even picking a shady spot can help make it a little more comfortable, because the full sun can actually add 15 degrees to what it feels like to you.

For more information and recommendations on heat safety from the National Weather Service, CLICK HERE.

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