Health

Western heat wave to stretch into Saskatchewan, then Manitoba

A blistering heat wave is moving across Western Canada, pushing record temperatures and the threat of wildfires into Saskatchewan on Tuesday.

Environment Canada meteorologist Jennifer Smith says a ridge of high pressure from Northern California crept into British Columbia on the weekend before invading the Northwest Territories and Alberta on Monday.

More than 20 daily heat records were broken Monday in B.C., adding to a similar number set on Sunday. Lytton was the hottest place in the country on Monday, hitting 42.4 C, according to Environment Canada. 

Other locations setting daily records in B.C. included Pemberton, where the temperature reached 39.1 C, and Osoyoos with 39.7 C.

On Tuesday it’s expected to reach 41 C in Kamloops, B.C., where the forecast shows temperatures in the mid- to high 30s persisting into the weekend.

Smith says the heat will travel into Manitoba by Wednesday and may reach the edge of the northwestern Ontario border before it moves south into the United States again.

Smith says they’re watching for things that lead to wildfires: hot and dry conditions, wind and lightning without rain — something that is in the forecast already for parts of B.C.

A separate heat wave has sent temperatures into the 30s in Atlantic Canada and parts of Ontario.

WATCH | Residents in B.C.’s Fraser Valley try to beat the heat:

Heat wave across B.C. forecast to last through midweek

Mother Nature has turned up the heat throughout the province, with parts of the Fraser Valley seeing temperatures over 30 C. And it’s only forecasted to get warmer — a heat warning is in effect for Abbotsford, Chilliwack and the rest of the valley. As Belle Puri reports, keeping cool isn’t easy, particularly for those living rough on the streets.

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Meanwhile, heavy rainfall is expected in areas of southern Ontario and Quebec as Environment Canada issued special weather statements warning that remnants of hurricane Beryl could cause downpours of 20 to 40 mm of rain per hour at times starting Tuesday night or Wednesday.

Dozens of heat warnings or alerts have been issued through to Saskatchewan, prompting Health Canada to warn of the risks extreme heat can bring.

Peter Berry of Health Canada says heat stroke is a “medical emergency” that can lead to long-term health problems or death, and people need to stay up to date on their local forecasts, while also checking on vulnerable populations.

“If you witness someone with complete or partial loss of consciousness, who is confused, has a high body temperature or has stopped sweating, call 911 or your local emergency number immediately,” he said.

While they wait for paramedics, they should attempt to cool the person using cold water and fanning them, he said.

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