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Will County EMA Urges Precautions Ahead of High Temperatures
Matthew Libs

Will County EMA Urges Precautions Ahead of High Temperatures

The Will County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) is advising residents to take precautions during an anticipated stretch of extreme heat during Father’s Day Weekend and the following week.

“We expect many people are planning to take advantage of the warm weather this Father’s Day Weekend for outdoor activities,” said Will County EMA Director Allison Anderson. “With high temperatures expected, I urge all residents to take steps to stay cool and be aware of the signs of overheating and dehydration.”

The National Weather Service is predicting extended periods of sustained high temperatures above 90 degrees starting on Sunday. Temperatures may reach highs above 100 degrees on some days. In these conditions, heat stroke, heat cramps or heat exhaustion are possible with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity.

“Heat is responsible for the highest number of weather-related deaths every year in Illinois,” said Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant. “During this weekend and next week, please monitor the daily forecasts, take proper precautions to avoid overheating, and check on your neighbors, friends, and family who are vulnerable to extreme heat.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides the following list of warning signs and symptoms of heat illnesses:

  • Heat Cramp Symptoms: Painful muscle cramps/spasms usually in legs and abdomen; heavy sweating.
  • Heat Exhaustion Symptoms: Heavy sweating, weakness or tiredness, cool, pale, clammy skin; fast, weak pulse, muscle cramps, dizziness, nausea or vomiting, headache, fainting.
  • Heat Stroke Symptoms: Throbbing headache, confusion, dizziness, body temperature above 103°F, hot, red, dry or damp skin, rapid and strong pulse, fainting, loss of consciousness.

Residents should also be aware of the following tips during periods of high temperatures:

  • Wear light-colored, loose-fitting, and lightweight clothing.
  • Avoid strenuous activity during mid-day.
  • Limit direct sunlight, both outside and inside.
  • Hydrate with water, not caffeinated or alcoholic beverages.
  • Use awnings or curtains to deflect the sun.
  • Make use of pools, splash pads, or sprinklers to help lower your body temperature
  • Fans will move air around, but do not lower your temperature.
  • Use air conditioning inside your home or visit an air-conditioned location. 
  • Check in with relatives and neighbors on if they have access to air conditioning.
  • Never leave children or pets in a vehicle.

Residents should also be aware of the cooling centers available in almost every community in the county, including in village halls, fire stations, libraries, and other public meeting sites.

For a full listing of cooling centers, visit the Will County EMA website at www.willcountyema.org/warmingcooling.

More tips on extreme heat safety can be found from IEMA at: https://ready.illinois.gov/hazards/extremetempshot.html.

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