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According to the National Weather Service, rising temperatures are expected to be in the upper 90s and the heat index reaching 110ºF to 115ºF. Due to these factors, the Evanston Health Department has declared a Heat Emergency for this afternoon and urges all residents to take preventive actions during this extremely hot weather to avoid heat-related illness, such as heat-stroke.

IMPORTANT ITEMS TO REMEMBER ABOUT HEAT

  • Slow down. Reduce, eliminate or rescheduled strenuous activities until the coolest time of the day. Avoid outdoor exercise or tasks during the hottest periods of the day. Children, senior and anyone with health problems should stay in the coolest available place, not necessarily indoors.
  • Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight. 
  • Drink plenty of water or other non-alcohol or decaffeinated fluids. Your body needs water to keep cool. Drink plenty of fluids even if you don’t feel thirsty. Persons who have epilepsy or heart, kidney, or liver disease, are on fluid restrictive diets or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a physician before increasing their consumption of fluids. Do not drink alcoholic beverages and limited caffeinated beverages.
  • During excess heat period, spend more time in air-conditioned places. Air conditioning in homes and other buildings markedly reduces danger from the heat. If you cannot afford an air conditioner, go to a library, store or other location with air conditioning for part of the day.
  • Don’t get too much sun. Sunburn reduced your body’s ability to dissipate heat.

As part of the Heat Emergency, residents are also encouraged to take advantage of cooling centers across the city. If residents need transportation to the cooling centers, they are asked to call 3-1-1 (847/448-4311). Those without air conditioning may visit the following public cooling centers in Evanston:
• Chandler-Newberger Center at 1028 Central St. open until 9 p.m.
• Ecology Center at 2024 McCormick Blvd. open until 5 p.m.
• Fleetwood-Jourdain Center at 1655 Foster St. open until 9 p.m.
• Noyes Cultural Arts Center at 927 Noyes St. open until 7 p.m.
• Levy Senior Center at 300 Dodge Ave. open until 9 p.m.
• Robert Crown Center at 1701 Main St. open until midnight

The Evanston Health Department recommends the following to prevent heat related illnesses:• Drink lots of water, sports beverages or natural juices.
• Avoid alcohol, caffeine and high salt intake;
• Stay in a cool, shaded areas and keep the blinds drawn or lights down.
• Avoid excessive exposure to the sun;
• Use air conditioners or fans; avoid excessive exposure to heat in unventilated areas;
• Reduce physical activity;
• Take cool baths or showers and use cool towels;
• Wear loose, light cotton clothing and a breathable hat;
• Eat light meals; Avoid eating heavy meals and using the oven;
• Do not sit, or let anyone sit in a hot car, even for a few minutes;

Remember to Check on People at risk for heat related illness, especially elderly individuals.

A heat emergency is in effect when the weather services predicts a heat index of 105ºF and is lifted when it lowers below 90. For more information contact the Evanston’s 311 Service Center, or visit www.cityofevanston.org.