Nearly 150 Cold-Related ER Visits Reported Across Illinois

One death has also been reported as a result of the cold

The Illinois Department of Public Health says at least 144 people made hospital emergency-room visits and one person has died due to cold-related injuries since Tuesday.

Department spokesman Melaney Arnold said Thursday that there were at least 65 visits in Chicago and at least 75 outside Chicago. The data say the injuries were either hypothermia or frostbite. The department didn't list the specific cause of the death or where it occurred.

The injuries came as temperatures plummeted in Illinois to double-digit subzero readings. Temperatures were as low as minus 33 in Moline and minus 31 in Rockford on Thursday. Wind chill readings fell to more than 55 below zero in some areas.

While most of Chicago slept, the city's lakefront froze over and temperatures reached -23 degrees at O'Hare Airport, breaking the previous daily record of 15 degrees below zero set on Jan. 31, 1966. Benches, railings and parking meters were covered in thick ice.

Temperatures were forecast to ease later Thursday before warming to more than 50 degrees in some parts of Illinois in the coming days.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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