On this Labor Day, no one is celebrating summer's end at Villa Bonita apartments in Dallas. It still feels like summer outside and inside. The air conditioning has been on the fritz since Thursday.
DALLAS -- On this Labor Day, no one is celebrating summer's end at Villa Bonita apartments in east Dallas. It still feels like summer outside and inside.
For residents, there's no sign cooler air is on the way. The air conditioning has been on the fritz since late Thursday night.
"It's ridiculous!" said Patricia McKnight. "No one should have to live like this, and pay to live like this!"
McKnight said she has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and had just returned home from the hospital. The air conditioning went out for more than 100 apartments late last Thursday night and early Friday morning. The complex relies on evaporative coolers, which use water lines. Residents blamed broken pipes, which they said aren't being fixed fast enough.
"They call it 'air conditioning,' and it's a swamp cooler." McKnight said. "This is what we used when I was six years old, and I'm 58."
Some said it was cooler outside than inside their apartments, and sat on their steps or the sidewalk as kids played outside. Telisha Williams invited News 8 inside her apartment.The thermostat read 90 degrees.
"We have the windows open, doors open, fan going, and sleep with as little clothing as possible," Williams said.
Residents said ambulances have been called for children, elderly, and disabled people who can't tolerate the sweltering conditions.
"This is not right for these kids going to school," said Melinda Cashion, who has a two-year-old daughter. "It's not right for these babies going to the hospital."
News 8 talked to one of the site managers who said crews were repairing the air conditioning. He couldn't say when the air would be back on or tell us why residents weren't given fans or portable units in the meantime.
When asked if he understood why people were upset he said, "Tell them to pay the rent."
"Everybody is just fed up. We're fed up," said one resident, who identified herself as Ms. Murphy.
Some residents said they were told they could buy and install wall units, but most said they could not afford to pay for one.