July 12th, 2024

Heat warnings expand in B.C. as heat expected to intensify

By The Canadian Press on July 7, 2024.

People sit on the bow of a recreational boat anchored on False Creek in Vancouver on July 3, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

VANCOUVER – Environment Canada says a heat wave covering more than three dozen regions in British Columbia is expected to intensify today.

It says elevated temperatures pose a risk to public health, so people are encouraged to take precautions to minimize exposure.

The weather office has issued heat warnings that cover much of the lower third of the province, the northeastern part of B.C., and inland sections of the central and norths coasts.

Some regions of the province, including the southern Interior, are bracing for temperatures that may push into the low 40s this week.

Environment Canada initially issued about two dozen warnings but expanded them to cover more regions late Saturday afternoon.

Among them was Metro Vancouver, which is expected to have daytime temperatures of up to mid-30s, but high 20s near the water.

The City of Vancouver says in a news release that it opened cooling centres in libraries and community centres, and is reminding residents of the more than 200 permanent water fountains that are freely available for use across the city.

It also asked residents to check on vulnerable people, including seniors, people who live alone, those who have pre-existing health conditions, mental illness including substance use disorders, are experiencing homelessness or have limited mobility.

“Guidance from health partners indicates that it may be unsafe for some people at greater risk of heat illness to spend time in indoor temperatures above 26 degrees Celsius,” the release said. “The risk may increase significantly when indoor temperatures are above 31 degrees Celsius.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 7, 2024.

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