High Heat, Lack of Power an Uncomfortable Combination

By Anthony Ponce
|  Saturday, Jul 2, 2011  |  Updated 6:06 PM CDT
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A cooler front passes through, bringing more comfortable temperatures and a pleasant end to the holiday weekend.

A cooler front passes through, bringing more comfortable temperatures and a pleasant end to the holiday weekend.

About 800 customers in Waukegan were still without power Saturday evening, two days after a hail and rain storm pounded the area.

With hot and humid conditions, keeping comfortable was quite the struggle, and at least one customer said ComEd has been a tease with promises for restoration.

"They've been telling me like, it's supposed to be on yesterday around 5 p.m., then 8 p.m., then 2 a.m.," said Bryan Wiley as he sat outside in his car, the only place he can charge his cellphone.

ComEd crews are working behind his house, where a downed tree took down the power lines.Still, he said, the teasing continues.

"Actually, just got a text this morning saying my power was restored. And I look out the window and the power line is still on the ground. That's kinda crazy, too, because it's like getting your hopes up, then nothing," he said.

The storms left 145,000 customers without power, most in the northern suburbs. Wiley and his neighbors were among the unlucky 2,000 still powerless early Saturday.

With window air conditioning units useless and fans inoperable, neighbors said they've had to sleep near their windows, hoping for a breeze.

"There's no way you can sleep," said Ramona Wade. "I did get up and drink some water, but the water is not even cool."

"My food's spoiling. This is crazy," said Twana Banks. "We have to get outta here. We have to go somewhere. And I'm not even sure where cause we don't even have family out here."

A short drive away, the cool waters of Bolan Park were an oasis families trying to cool off.

"That's why you gotta take your kids out; to get wet," said Maribel Sarrano.

Relief may be on the way.  A cooler front is expected to pass through during the overnight hours into Sunday, bringing cooler temperatures and a pleasant end to the holiday weekend.

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