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Chicago’s Cooling Centers Are Open As Extreme Heat And Humidity Descend On City

The city encouraged everyone to check on neighbors and call 311 or go to 311.gov to find out where the nearest cooling center is located.

Chicago Fire Department firefighters respond to a call at Dearborn and Kinzie on Aug. 9, 2021.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — The city of Chicago’s cooling centers remain open Wednesday as the heat index soars into triple digits for the second straight day.

The heat index could reach 105 to 100 degrees Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.

The city encouraged everyone to check on neighbors, particularly older people, and call 311 or go to 311.gov to find out where the nearest cooling center is located.

These cooling centers are open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday:

  • Englewood Center, 1140 W. 79th Street
  • Garfield Center, 10 S. Kedzie Ave.
  • King Center, 4314 S. Cottage Grove
  • North Area Center, 845 W. Wilson Ave.
  • South Chicago Center, 8650 S. Commercial Ave.
  • Trina Davila Center, 4312 W. North Ave.

Cloth face coverings are required inside all cooling centers. Masks will be available on site if someone needs one.

Senior centers, libraries and park district facilities will also be available as cooling centers during their normal operating hours.

Watch the Office of Emergency Management and Communication heat press conference here:

People should limit their time outdoors and should never leave children or pets in unattended cars, according to the weather agency.

People should also look out for signs of heat stroke and heat exhaustion; if someone is overcome, people should call 911 and move the sick person into a cool, shaded place, according to the city and National Weather Service.

Heat stroke symptoms: body temperature of 103 degrees or higher; hot, red, dry or damp skin; fast, strong pulse; headache; dizziness; nausea; confusion; passing out, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Heat exhaustion symptoms: heavy sweating; cold, pale and clammy skin; fast, weak pulse; nausea or vomiting; muscle cramps; tiredness or weakness; dizziness; headache; passing out, according to the CDC.

How To Stay Safe

  • Drink fluids, including water, according to the National Weather Service. Avoid alcohol, caffeine and soda, according to the city.
  • Stay inside and in an air-conditioned room, if possible.
  • Wear lightweight and loose-fitting clothing, if possible.
  • Do not leave children or pets in unattended cars, even for a few minutes.

If You Don’t Have Air Conditioning

  • Keep your shades drawn and blinds closed but the windows slightly open, according to the city.
  • Keep electric lights off or turned down.
  • Minimize your use of the oven and stove.
  • Take cool baths and showers.

If You Have To Go Outside

  • Reschedule strenuous outdoor activities for the early morning or evening, according to the National Weather Service.
  • Stay out of the sun.
  • Drink fluids, especially water.
  • Rest frequently in shaded or air-conditioned environments.
  • Know the symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Anyone overcome should be moved to a cool, shaded location and people should call 911 for them, according to the weather agency and city.

Check On Others

  • Check on relatives, friends and neighbors over the next few days, according to the city. The city emphasized checking on older people and people with disabilities.
  • If you can’t contact someone, you can request the city do a wellbeing check on them by calling 311 or submitting a request online or through the CHI311 app.

Pets

  • Do not leave pets in unattended cars, even for a few minutes.
  • Provide your dog with cool water, shade and monitor them when they’re outside, according to. Cook County Animal and Rabies Control. Short-coated animals and those with white or tan fur can get sunburn, especially on their noses, according to the agency.
  • Walk your dog on grass, dirt or gravel, and avoid asphalt and concrete, if possible.
  • Keep your indoor temperature cool and make sure your pet has water.
  • Make sure your windows have screens installed if you are going to open them.
  • In pets, the signs of heat stroke include fatigue, excessive panting, disorientation, lethargy, discomfort, seizures and collapse, according to the animal agency. Get help from a veterinarian immediately if your pet has these symptoms.

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