With no relief in sight as a stifling heat wave continues to grip the Chicago area, the traditional ways for area residents to stay cool aren’t as available these days because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Beaches in Chicago remain closed due to the pandemic, and numerous public pools and splash pads across the region are also shuttered because of the illness, leaving residents scrambling to find ways to beat the heat.
“We are doing a lot of water balloons, sprinklers, inflatable pools, and just trying to out earlier in the morning to visit places,” resident Carly Patel said. “Like walking around the Riverwalk, or going to a park, then we head back inside when it gets too hot.”
On average, Chicago sees 16 days where the temperature exceeds 90 degrees in an entire year, but the city has already seen 13 days above that threshold, according to the National Weather Service.
Chicago could potentially blow past the seasonal average this week, as high temperatures are expected to say above 90 degrees for at least the next three days.
That continued heat is leaving suburban residents scrambling for relief too, but in Naperville, one potential option is out of the running, as a brand-new splash pad remains closed because state inspectors have fallen behind schedule due to the coronavirus.
Even still, there are options for residents, as Dr. Peter Schubel of Edward Hospital says you can enjoy the outdoors, as long as you limit yourself.
“I don’t think being inside the whole time is the answer. That being said, you have to be careful about it,” he said. “You gotta stay well hydrated, make sure that you’re drinking plenty of water, and then you have to take breaks.”
Dr. Schubel also warns that your body will give you warning signs if the heat is beginning to harm you.
“You move through heat exhaustion and into heatstroke, and you want to get inside way before that,” he said. “Your body will (warn) you when you start getting lightheaded, dizzy, and thirsty. That’s your body talking to you, telling you to come out of the heat, get hydrated, and to get into air conditioning.”