Working in the heat

By WEEK Producer

July 17, 2013 Updated Jul 18, 2013 at 9:12 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- By mid-morning temperatures were already heating up in East Peoria.

It only got hotter throughout the day for the crew laying asphalt in the parking lot at the local Kroger store.

"The engine temperature usually runs about 195 degrees and the mix is anywhere from 280 to 300," said worker Brandyn Cagle, "So set your oven on about 400 and sit inside and hope for a breeze and that's what you can get."

On this day, even the equipment succumbs to the heat. An electrical failure has one crew member trouble-shooting repairs while everyone else takes an unscheduled break.

"In the back there are augers that dispense the material to each side and that's not working," Cagle said.

At Alwan and Sons Meat Company in Peoria lunch time grill duty has John Couri working up a sweat.

To keep his cool during his 3 1/2 hour shift Couri drinks a half-gallon of water and makes it a point to step away from the grill every so often.

"The smoke really gets your breathing," said Couri. "Sometimes you have to clear your throat breath easier and get fresh air."

The animals at the Peoria Zoo can get overheated too. One of the tigers is living the high life though. He has his own sprinkler.

"We've got a million fans," said Zoo Director Yvonne Strode. "If they break down we go buy more. We give them fresh water throughout the day and we put sprinklers on them. Some get ice treats throughout the day and we make sure their pools are filled."

Some zoo residents like it hot.

"The reptiles are loving it," Strode said. "They're hot-weather creatures so they like it a lot."

Most of the animals prefer the shade. Just like people.