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City Reminds Residents of Heat Alert Response Protocol as Summer Heat Approaches

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Under the Emergency and Disaster Management Act, the City of Kamloops is required to prepare and plan for local emergency events. The Ministry of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness, Environment and Climate Change Canada, and BC Public Health continue to lead the BC Heat and Alert Response System coordination efforts.

The City will activate a heat alert response protocol when Environment and Climate Change Canada issues a heat warning for Kamloops. This may include activating indoor cooling spaces when a City facility is available; promoting neighbour health checks; and sharing the BC Heat Alert and Response System messaging prior to, during, and after activations through the City website, social media channels, and emergency notification system; and by working with neighbourhood associations and other partners. 

A heat warning is issued when the daytime high temperature is forecast to be 35°C or greater and the nighttime low temperature does not go below 18°C for two or more days in a row.  

Changes implemented in 2024 by Environment and Climate Change Canada include the potential for a special weather statement for the first heat event of the summer at temperatures somewhat lower than the regional heat warning threshold criteria due to the added public health risk of early summer heat. After the third heat warning of the year, Environment and Climate Change Canada may recommended extending the trigger threshold to three or more consecutive days at or above the regional temp threshold.

Subject to its availability, the Sandman Centre concourse has been recommended as the official site for an indoor cooling centre when a heat warning has been issued. City staff and recreational contractors, where appropriate, will provide staffing and oversight in the space. The opening of the cooling centre will be communicated if it is active during a heat event.

“In the event that a heat warning has been issued, our wish is that residents can work together to ensure that family members, friends, and neighbours have someone that will reach out to them to check in on their well-being,” said Ty Helgason, the City’s Emergency Preparedness Manager. “The City is committed to doing the best we can to share information from our partners to educate and inform our residents on how they can best prepare for potential extreme heat this summer.”

Residents are encouraged to be aware of the City’s heat response protocol and understand the actions that the City takes. The City’s website lists valuable information and connection to resources from partners such as Interior Health, Emergency Management and Climate Readiness, Environment and Climate Change Canada, and BC Public Health. Resources include:

  • Extreme Heat Response Checklist: identifying heat-related illness; rapid risk assessment; health check tips
  • Household Preparedness Guide: preparing yourself and your home for extreme heat
  • City of Kamloops heat relief options, such as water parks, drinking fountains, and washrooms with potable water at various park locations throughout the city

For tips to beat the heat as well as symptoms and treatment for heat-related illness, visit Kamloops.ca/Heat