Eighteen ambulances responded to a pep rally at Morton West High School in Berwyn Friday afternoon after nurses became inundated with students reporting heat-related illnesses, authorities said.
Berwyn Fire Chief Dennis O’Halloran said the calls of heat exhaustion started coming in around 3 p.m. The students were in the school’s stadium, he said. Six patients were transported to hospitals and one signed a release form to go home with their parents, he said.
Paramedics were helping nurses who were overwhelmed by the number of people feeling sick, O’Halloran said. Anyone else in the stadium that did not go to the hospital was sent home.
A walking parade between Morton West and Morton East high schools began at 1 p.m. but it was unclear if those students were sick.
Sky 5 was over the scene shortly before 4 p.m. where half a dozen ambulances, police and fire vehicles could be seen.
Eight other agencies responded to the school, O'Halloran said.
Berwyn has added an additional ambulance to be on standby during Friday night's homecoming football games.