B.C. on cusp of third heat wave of the year

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — British Columbians’ air conditioners will be put to good use once again as another heat wave is set to begin this week.

NEWS 1130 meteorologist Michael Kuss is calling the peak of the wave – which is expected Thursday – “a day of concern.”

Nighttime lows aren’t expected to dip below 17C Thursday.

For the rest of the week and through the weekend, temperatures could hit the high 20s to low to mid-30s in some parts of the province.

In some areas further east, like Pitt Meadows, it may feel like the low 40s.

Areas that will feel the heat the most are the Sea to Sky region, parts of Vancouver Island, the Thompson-Okanagan, the southern Kootenays and Fraser Canyon.

The difference between this round of hot weather and June’s deadly heatwave is the overnight lows will be in the mid-teens.

Read More: B.C. heatwave causing serious sleep struggles

You’re urged to take precautions like staying indoors between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., wear sunscreen of at least 30 SPF, and drink lots of water.

You should also monitor for signs of heat-related illness such as dizziness, nausea, headache, shortness of breath, swelling of hands and feet and extreme thirst.

Vancouver cooling centres opening up earlier

After the June heat dome tested the city’s resources, Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart says they will be addressing the heat a bit differently this time around.

The City will be opening cooling centres earlier, distributing water and fans, and reaching out to organizations that serve the most vulnerable populations.

“Now we’re doubling those efforts. If in fact we get in the same situation, which doesn’t appear to be this case – but we’re ready for it if it does occur – we’re prepared to throw all our resources at this,” Stewart says.

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Stewart also says if things get worse, they’ll move to a Level 2 Emergency.

“Contemplating, for example, keeping cooling centers open 24/7 until the heat waves pass,” he says. “Some people sometimes go through a lot of difficulty in the evenings when cooling centers may not have been traditionally open.”

Last June, the heat wave saw temperatures soar to 40C in some parts of the province.

Between June 25 and July 1, 815 people died from a sudden death across the province. This was a four-time increase over the average for that time period of 198. Heat is believed to be a factor in many of the deaths.

Last month, B.C.’s chief coroner said hundreds of deaths – mostly among seniors – were linked to the last heat wave.

– With files from Lisa Steacy

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