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Chicago FD adds ambulances amid excessive heat warning

Temperatures over the next two days, with the heat index, are expected to approach 120 degrees

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Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune

By Deanese Williams-Harris
Chicago Tribune

CHICAGO — National Weather Service officials expect “blistering” heat to coat areas of the central U.S., including Chicago, to the Gulf Coast states over the next two days where the heat index, which measures what the temperature feels like, could approach 120 degrees.

Officials expect temperatures to break daily and monthly records. Approximately 130 million people across 22 states, from Minneapolis to New Orleans, are now under heat alerts and excessive heat warnings, officials said.

Morning conditions at Chicago’s airports are 78 degrees with fog and mist. A high in the upper 90s was expected Wednesday and Thursday. Combined with humidity, temperatures can feel hotter, officials said.

Officials said it is “imperative” to take the heat seriously and to avoid extended time outdoors. Officials said the heat index could be deadly to anyone without effective cooling and hydration.

[RELATED: 9 extreme heat safety tips for public safety personnel]

Larry Langford, spokesman for the Chicago Fire Department, sent out a statement Wednesday morning and said due to the dangerous heat, the fire department will add additional ambulances in anticipation of increased calls to 911.

Weather officials said heat is the top weather-related cause of death nationwide.

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