The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for Chicago and the rest of Cook County, as well as some of the surrounding suburbs, starting on Friday morning and lasting at least until Saturday.
The warning means "that a prolonged period of dangerously hot temperatures will occur, and the combination of hot temperatures and high humidity will lead to a dangerous situation where heat illnesses are likely," the weather service said.
The alert, which was upgraded by excessive heat monitoring, starts at 11am Friday and lasts until 7pm Saturday, encompassing not just the city of Chicago but also cities in the suburbs of Will and Kendall Counties.
The heatwave could extend to three days, said Matt Friedlein, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in the suburb of Romeoville. During the warning period, highs could fluctuate around the middle of the 90-degree mark and the lows could not drop below 80 degrees, according to the weather service.
But it will feel a lot hotter: from late morning to early evening on Friday and Saturday and possibly also on Sunday, people in Chicago and the surrounding area can expect a heat index of 1
Even at night, low temperatures are likely to fluctuate 80 degrees, he said. And he said the conditions could be further out of the metropolitan area in places like Pontiac, Ottawa and Dixon.
"Compared to the heat wave two weeks ago, this seems to be stronger," said Friedlein. "The body is really tested with heat like that."
During this time, people should avoid strenuous activities and longer periods outside, drink plenty of water, and wear sunscreen, he said.
Avoid prolonged exposure to heat, wear sunscreen, drink water, wear light clothing, do not leave children or pets unattended and keep track of friends and family, said Ricky Castro, another local weather meteorologist, earlier in the week.
"The main thing is to stay cool and stay safe," said Castro.
The rising temperatures are accompanied by high humidity.
Those with medical conditions – such as chronic lung disease – should avoid long periods of heat exposure, check their air conditioning works, and make sure they have adequate resources so they do not necessarily need to go outside, Dr. George T. Chiampas, Emergency Physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
"Understand that the heat in combination with moisture, especially those extreme temperatures that we face in the next three days, can be a burden on your body," said Chiampas.
For those who venture out and need to be physically active, Chiampas recommends stopping early in the morning or late at night and taking breaks.
And look for symptoms of heat-related illnesses such as headache, nausea, and tiredness.
"Watch how you feel and give yourself a chance to cool off," said Chiampas.
A trip to your Lake Michigan Beach can provide some relief. The water has warmed up since the Memorial Day weekend and temperatures are now in the 60 degree range. On Wednesday, the water temperature reached 70 degrees near Navy Pier, Castro said.
"It's getting warm, but not pleasantly warm," he said. "It's high enough where you can go in a bit."
As for the rest of the summer, things are not looking good for the heatwave.
"Do not shoot the messenger," said state climate researcher Jim Angel. "It's a lot warmer than average or normal, as we say, and then, if we look at the July forecast, it will be a very warm July."
This summer, there is "a very likely chance That we'll see those 95-degree temperatures that we all know and love, Angel said.
"The other side of the coin is that it has been extremely wet so far, so there's plenty of moisture coming back into the Atmosphere evaporates and really increases the humidity, "Angel said." I think that will actually be our bigger problem. "
Although the Chicago may not be fans of suffocating moisture, the recent rains can help your garden grow.
19659002] "Most established plants in the soil have a pretty good effect on the amount of water you can work with, so that should really save me a lot of stress," says Stephen Hill, Creative Director of Garden Center Sprout Home in West Town.
But gardeners should keep up with the heat Keep an eye on everything that has been planted fresh, and make sure they're well-watered.
"If you question it, it's probably better to water it," said Jennifer Paravola, owner of the Farmers Market Garden Center in Irving Park
For those with container gardens, such as hanging baskets and window boxes, Hill recommends to water early the day before the sun hits. And then do a double irrigation round the whole day.
Overall, the heat will help to plant plants and vegetables. The high temperatures could even make your already spicy peppers warmer, said Paravola.
And cacti and other succulents along with many flowering plants – like lavender – "will love the heat," said Hill.
Chicago residents may inquire at 311 whether they can request a well-being study from older friends or family members or obtain information about the nearest cooling center.
For more information about the weather forecast, visit the weather page of the Tribune.
hleone @ chicagotribune.com
Twitter @morgreene, @hannahleone