CITY OFFICIALS REMIND CHICAGOANS OF EXTREME SUMMER WEATHER PRECAUTIONS
Temperature Expected to Hit 95 Degrees on Thursday and Friday with Heat Index of 106 Degrees
With an Excessive Heat Warning in effect Thursday and Friday and increasingly hot weather continuing on Saturday, the Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) and other City agencies remind residents and visitors to stay informed about weather-related conditions, know what precautions to take and where to go to get relief from the heat.
“Throughout the country, we have seen how extreme weather conditions can endanger people and communities and we hope all Chicagoans keep safety in mind and to check-in with family and neighbors who may need connection to City services such as cooling centers to escape the heat,” said OEMC Executive Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau. “As always, OEMC continues to monitor weather conditions and is prepared to activate plans and alert the public should a situation occur.”
As temperatures rise, the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) reminds everyone, especially seniors, to take basic precautions to stay cool and to be aware of the signs and symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion.
“By working together, Chicagoans can beat the heat and stay safe,” said CDPH Commissioner Julie Morita, M.D. “Everyone should stay hydrated, stay in a cool place and check on friends and family members who may need additional help.”
“Heat exhaustion” is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids. “Heat stroke” is more serious, and occurs when the body starts to lose its ability to regulate itself. The telltale signs of heat stroke are:
An extremely high body temperature, such as 103 degrees or above
Dizziness and nausea
A throbbing headache and a pulse that is rapid and strong
Skin that is red, hot and dry
If you see someone suffering from heat stroke, take immediate action. Call 9-1-1 immediately and then try to move the person into a cool place and cool the person with water.
To reduce the risk of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, OEMC encourages residents to take the following steps:
Drink plenty of water, at least eight glasses a day to avoid dehydration
Ensure that children stay well hydrated
Visit the nearest City Cooling Center, operated by the Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS). While hours and days of serve may be extended due to extreme conditions, the most the location and regular hours are as follows:
Garfield Center – 10 S. Kedzie Ave., Chicago, IL 60612, open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
Englewood Center – 1140 W. 79th Street, Chicago, IL 60621, open Monday – Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
King Center – 4314 S. Cottage Grove, Chicago, IL 60653, open Monday – Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
North Area Center – 845 W. Wilson Ave., Chicago, IL 60640, open Monday – Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
South Chicago Center – 8650 S. Commercial Ave., Chicago, IL 60617, open Monday – Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Trina Davila Center – 4312 W. North Ave., Chicago, IL 60639, open Monday – Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In addition to the cooling centers, residents may also access the following relief across several Chicago Public Library locations, the City’s 15 senior centers and other public buildings such as the local police station during public hours of operation to keep cool.
Contact the local Chicago Park District facility via 3-1-1 to find out about beach and park locations, hours and programs.
Sign up for extreme weather alerts at www.NotifyChicago.org
Chicagoans are encouraged to be good neighbors and family members by checking on the disabled and seniors who may not understand the effects of extreme heat, or call 3-1-1 to request well-being checks and rides to cooling centers.
Pet owners should ensure they have plenty of fresh water and are out of the sun.
With these dangerous heat conditions, OEMC cautions the public to never leave children or pets in parked vehicles – even in moderate heat or for short periods of time since inside temperatures can rapidly increase and have fatal results.
Beaches, public parks and pools typically make excellent places to cool off, but open fire hydrants do not.
“Aside from impacting the water supply if a fire should break out in the area, playing in the shooting water of an open hydrant can be dangerous for children,” said Chicago Fire Department Commissioner Jose Santiago. “Children are not thinking about safety, and they often cannot hear approaching cars.”
Residents can also obtain more information about extreme weather preparedness by visiting www.AlertChicago.com and sign up to receive free weather alert notifications at www.NotifyChicago.org. For the most current information on Cooling Center days and hours of service, subject to change during extreme conditions, residents may call 3-1-1.