With a building ridge of high pressure over B.C.’s South Coast, Environment Canada has upgraded to a heat warning for parts of East Vancouver Island and the Southern Gulf Islands.
The warning is in effect for Courtenay to Campbell River, Duncan to Nanaimo and Nanoose Bay to Fanny Bay.
People were seen cooling down along Vancouver Island beaches Wednesday but many others had to endure the heat, construction workers among them.
“I’m working with sheet metal specifically so you get the reflection and it’s pretty toasty for sure,” said Breana Morgan who is working on the 10-story Crestview Tower project in Campbell River.
“You’ve got to keep packing the water in, have to keep taking cool-down breaks, putting wet rags on your head under your hard hat,” said Nate Chalaturnyk, a foreman for M2 Green Mechanical.
Temperatures will not be as hot as when a “heat dome” swept B.C.’s South Coast in June, but they’re hot enough to trigger a heat warning and handful of special weather statements.
The weather agency warned Wednesday that daytime high temperatures from now to Sunday morning will reach 30 degrees Celsius.
Overnight lows are also forecast to reach the mid to upper teens. Slightly cooler daytime temperatures are expected in areas near the water.
The Regional District of Nanaimo announced Wednesday that it would extend hours of some cooling spaces, including Oceanside Place Arena in Parksville, and reminded residents they could cool off at various libraries, shopping centres and recreational facilities around the city.
The RDN said it will provide bottled water to transit officials as well as a Salvation Army soup kitchen and food bank in Parksville .
Environment Canada has also issued special weather statements for inland Vancouver Island and the South Island in advance of the unseasonably warm temperatures.
Young children, pregnant women, the elderly, people with chronic illnesses and those who work or exercise outdoors are at the greatest risk of heat-related illness.
Symptoms of heat illness including dizziness, fainting, nausea and vomiting, rapid breathing and heartbeat, extreme thirst and decreased urination with unusually dark urine.
Environment Canada is reminding people to drink plenty of water, check in on older family, friends and neighbours, and reduce their heat risk by only going outside during the coolest parts of the day.