Excessive heat warning: Heat advisory, air quality alert issued for parts of Chicago area Thursday

Heat index today could climb toward or past 100 degrees

ByJohn Garcia, Michelle Gallardo, and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Thursday, July 27, 2023
Chicago area under excessive heat warnings
An excessive heat warning, air quality alert and heat advisory are in effect for much of the Chicago area Thursday, as temperatures climb.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Thursday will be one of the hottest day of the year in the Chicago area, with heat indices over 100 in places.

ABC7 Chicago Meteorologist Jaisol Martinez said high temperatures will be in the mid-90s Thursday and Friday, with Heat Index values from 100 to 110 degrees.

The National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Warning for Grundy, Kankakee, LaSalle, Livingston and southern Will counties in Illinois and Newton County in Indiana until 9 p.m. Friday.

A Heat Advisory is also in effect for Boone, southern Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Kendall, McHenry, northern and eastern Will counties in Illinois and Lake, Porter and Jasper counties in Indiana until 9 p.m. Friday.

There are excessive heat warnings and heat alerts in effect for large swaths of the Chicago area through Friday night.

An Air Quality Alert is also in effect through midnight Friday for the Greater Chicago Metropolitan Area.

A second Heat Advisory was extended to central and northern Cook County but only from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday.

Residents in the city and suburbs flocked to the beach, pools and splash pads around the city to cool down.

"I like the thing that dumps water on your head," said Julia Lee, who was at the splash pad in Flossmoor. "Even though it's really heavy."

In Homewood just before noon it was already 94 degrees but felt like 109. Unsurprisingly, some of the parents at the splash pad were getting in on the action as well.

At Whiting's Wihala Beach in Indiana it was much the same story, with folks flocking to the beach in an effort to stay cool. They also took advantage of the local aqua park where you can jump, bounce and slide on an obstacle course on the water.

While there weren't any heat advisories back in the city it still feels muggy, even along the lakefront.

"A popsicle just makes the world right. Nothing's better than popsicles," said Sean Daw.

But it can't all be fun in the sun. For those who have to work outdoors, heat advisory or not, the temperatures and humidity can be dangerous. To stay safe in the heat, everyone is urged to limit time in the sun, wear loose, light clothing and stay hydrated.

"When people get heat exhaustion what they will start to feel is a headache, they'll feel dizzy, they'll feel nauseous," said Dr. Trevor Lewis, doctor of emergency medicine at Cook County Health. "Heat stroke, what that is, you start to become confused, you have trouble walking. You can't stop vomiting. That is a medical emergency. You need to seek medical help right away."

This week, the heat, humidity and poor air quality have posed serious health concerns for many people.

Active children and adults, especially people with pulmonary or respiratory disease such as asthma, should limit prolonged outdoor activity.

Area residents are urged to reduce pollution levels.

Friday will be the 17th Chicago Area Air Pollution Action Day in 2023.

The city of Chicago has several cooling areas for residents during the heat. Chicago Public Libraries and Chicago Park District fieldhouses will also have air conditioning.

Cooling area locations:

Englewood Center - 1140 W. 79th St., open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Garfield Center - 10 S. Kedzie Ave., open all day

King Center - 4314 S. Cottage Grove, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

North Area Center - 845 W. Wilson Ave., open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

South Chicago Center - 8650 S. Commercial Ave., open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Trina Davila Center - 4312 W. North Ave., open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.