Hot, humid and potentially stormy weather conditions will move across Cook County starting on Wednesday and ending Friday, according to the National Weather Service. Peak afternoon heat index values between 95 – 105 degrees are expected.
Cook County is increasing the number of cooling centers open to residents to include the County’s Skokie, Maywood and Bridgeview Courthouses Wednesday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Residents who do not have adequate access to air conditioning are advised to seek respite at a cooling center.
The County’s Department of Emergency Management and Regional Security offers the following tips during excessive summer heat to help keep residents safe:
- Stay hydrated and avoid alcohol and sugary drinks
- Try to stay in the shade or indoors as much as possible
- If working outside, take frequent breaks, preferably in an air-conditioned space
- Take pets indoors and make sure they have plenty of water
- Never leave children or pets unattended in a vehicle
It’s also important to check on relatives, neighbors, seniors and members of vulnerable populations when temperatures climb to extreme levels.
If you must work or spend extended time outdoors, watch for symptoms of heatstroke i.e., when the body starts to lose its ability to regulate itself. The telltale signs of heatstroke 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 there is a medical emergency due to a heat-related illness, call 9-1-1.
A complete list of cooling centers along with their hours of operation is available here.