Homeless services in Limerick city on high alert as temperatures soar in heatwave

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

Homeless services are on high alert as Limerick endures one of its strongest heatwaves in history this week

Homeless services are on high alert as Limerick endures one of its strongest heatwaves in history this week

HOMELESS services are on high alert in the city as Limerick endures one of its strongest heatwaves in history this week. 

While there have been no reported incidents, homeless people in temporary accommodation are at-risk of sun- or burn-related illnesses as temperatures are expected to hit 31 degrees by this Friday.

While the HSE does not list homeless people as an at-risk group, there are numerous at-risk homeless people, such as babies, elderly and those with mental health problems.

Fortunately for Novas, based on O’Connell Street, they will not run out of much-needed supplies such as suncream and water, thanks to donations from the Redemptorist Church.

“They made the job much easier for us financially. They said that they will reimburse whatever we need. They have been very kind to enable us to do that,” the spokesperson told the Leader this week. 

Elderly clients at Brother Russell House, Mulgrave Street, are being advised to remain indoors. Novas is monitoring those with mental health problems, as some medication can react with the sun.

The spokesperson said that Novas are also linking in with families, who have young children and babies.

“However, the problem there is that some of them are in emergency accommodation. They are all in one room. It’s very, very hot and uncomfortable in that room. That would be the biggest problem for them.”

As temperatures are expected to peak on Friday, with Limerick being one of the hottest places in Europe, Novas remains on high alert for their clients’ wellbeing.

“It is about trying to keep people indoors, keep them out of the direct sunlight in the peak hours, making sure everybody is hydrated and that everybody’s skin is protected from the sun.”

Clients are leaving centres in the mornings with suncream and water.