Though the province says a repeat of the heat dome is not in the forecast, health officials are suggesting people take precautions to stay out of the heat, drink water and limit activity this week. This comes as heat warnings from Environment Canada blanketed much of the southern coast of BC yesterday – including Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, East Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast – and more expected to take effect starting today. Warnings were also issued yesterday for Kootenay Lake – where temperatures are forecast to top 37 degrees Celsius between now and Thursday – and North Thompson, where highs of 29 degrees are expected. Special weather statements were also issued in the South Okanagan, including Penticton, and the northern Cariboo regions from now until Thursday – but the weather office says these could be upgraded if nighttime temperatures rise.
As BC has begun what’s expected to be a lengthy heat wave, renter advocates are calling on municipalities to consider setting a maximum temperature that rental units should be allowed to reach. Emily Rogers, director of operations for Victoria’s Together Against Poverty Society, says renters are often the most vulnerable during extreme heat. Rules for temperature minimums already exist and she says setting a maximum temperature is a reasonable next step. Vancouver Mayor Ken Sim says the city has nearly finished a multi-year study on indoor heat that could lead to changes to the city’s building code or bylaws.
Environment Canada says the Interior Health region of BC can expect daytime temperatures in the mid to high 30 degrees Celsius, as well as overnight lows near 18 degrees Celsius. The weather office began issuing heat warnings and special weather statements this weekend that cover much of southern BC. As the heat wave is forecast to creep from the coasts into the province’s interior, Interior Health Authority is reminding people that elevated temperatures increase the risk of heat-related illnesses. It says everyone is susceptible to the impacts of heat, but suggests people use air conditioning whenever possible, limit exercise and check in on their friends and family to ensure their wellbeing and safety as hot conditions are expected to persist for much of this week.
Environment Canada is warning about the impacts of smoke from wildfires burning in regions of the Yukon communities of Dawson, Mayo and Old Crow. It issued air quality advisories in those regions yesterday, saying the smoke is causing or is expected to cause poor air quality and reduced visibility in each of these three regions and may persist for about two days. This came before the territory rescinded its evacuation order for Mayo, which is now under evacuation alert, meaning residents should be prepared to leave on short notice if the situation worsens. However, the community of Old Crow, which is located about 800 kilometres north of Whitehorse and is home to about 250 people, remains on evacuation order.
The BC Wildfire Service says it is helping the the Kootenay Boundary Regional Fire Rescue respond to a wildfire that is burning west of Highway 22 within the city limits of Trail, BC. It says the Trail Creek wildfire is small in size and is not actively threatening structures, but it is burning in close proximity to some. The service says aviation resources and ground crews have been assigned to the blaze, so aircraft and fire activity will be visible in the community. The blaze is one of about 380 wildfires currently burning in the province.
A weekend helicopter crash near Enderby has sent four people to hospital. BC Emergency Health Services says they received a call that a helicopter made a crash-landing into the Shuswap River close to the Mabel Lake Resort on Saturday. It says seven ambulances responded and four people were then taken to hospital. BCEHS says all of them are in stable condition.