July 20th, 2024

B.C. told to brace for heat wave as forecast shows 40 degrees C for Kamloops

By The Canadian Press on July 3, 2024.

A woman balances on a rock while cooling off in the frigid Lynn Creek water in North Vancouver, B.C., on Monday, June 28, 2021. A warning preparedness meteorologist with Environment Canada says people across British Columbia should brace for an upcoming heat wave that's expected to send temperatures into the high 30s and beyond in the southern Interior. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

VICTORIA – An Environment Canada meteorologist says British Columbians should brace for an upcoming heat wave that’s expected to send temperatures into the high 30s and beyond in the southern Interior.

Warning preparedness meteorologist Armel Castellan says the heat will start on Vancouver Island and move east across the province, hitting the Interior over the later part of the weekend.

The forecast for Kamloops shows daytime highs of 40 degrees Celsius next Monday and Tuesday, which would be enough to trigger a heat warning.

Castellan says that as a ridge of high pressure makes its way across B.C., the high temperatures and clear, sunny days are likely to raise the wildfire risk.

He says temperatures could begin cooling by next Wednesday, but as the ridge moves on to the Prairies, there will be the potential for dry lightning in B.C. as the province heads into what is typically the hottest, driest stretch of summer.

Castellan says the difference between the upcoming heat wave and the deadly heat dome that killed more than 600 people in summer 2021 is that temperatures next week aren’t expected to surpass heat-warning criteria by such large margins.

“It’s a long-duration event, there’s no doubt about that,” he said of the forecast.

“But the impact on human health isn’t as extreme as when the temperatures get into this 45 (Celsius) and beyond degrees, particularly for the hottest places in the southwest Interior,” he said in an interview on Wednesday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 3, 2024.

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