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Bad news for Chicagoans already working the air conditioners into overtime: another heat wave is on its way and is expected to blast the area with temperatures reaching into the 90s, with a humid mix that will feel as scorching as 100 on some days.
The heat wave — which leaves many poor and minority residents most susceptible — could push temperatures to "dangerous" levels over the next several days, according to WGN meteorologist Tom Skilling. The city could see the longest string of 90-degree days in more than 11 months.
Chicago's average July temperature is 84 degrees, according to The Weather Channel, but Tuesday's heat index — a measure of how hot it feels outside — could climb as high as 100. According to the Sun-Times, that index could continue to climb through Friday, reaching 101 or 102.
Nighttime temperatures this week won't dip much lower than the upper 70s, though CBS Chicago weather reports say storms could roll in Friday to provide a small cool-off, dropping temps to the low 80s.
National Weather Service meteorologist Mark Ratzer explained via the Sun-Times Chicago may feel between five and ten degrees hotter than the surrounding areas due to "latent heat absorbed by concrete, glass and steel."
The city's most dangerous heat wave came in 1995 when, according to the National Weather Service, Chicago experienced 465 heat-related deaths over a three-week period when high temperatures reached 104 degrees and heat indexes rose above 110 degrees.