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Heat Response

In January 2022, the BC Health Effects of Anomalous Temperatures Coordinating Committee (BC HEAT Committee) was established to support planning and response efforts related to the public health impacts of significant heat events in British Columbia. The overarching objective of this committee is to ensure public health coordination around extreme hot weather. Key priorities of the BC HEAT Committee are the identification of consistent public health actions and messages for the heat alerting system in BC, and the creation of a second level of heat alert criteria that would trigger an elevated response. These priorities evolved into the creation and implementation of a two-tier heat alert and response system (HARS) for the province. The two tiers are: Heat Warning and Extreme Heat Emergency.

Emergency Management BC, Environment and Climate Change Canada, and BC Public Health will lead the BC heat alert response system coordination efforts. The City will share the BC heat alert response system messaging when the activation criteria are met, provide indoor and outdoor cooling and heat relief spaces, and encourage neighbour health checks to support community resiliency.

Criteria for Activation

Under the BC HARS protocol, Kamloops falls under a “southeast” region of the province. The criteria for a heat warning (alert level one) to be issued in the southeast region is a 35-18-35 forecast, which means a daytime high greater than or equal to 35 degrees Celsius and overnight low greater than or equal to 18 degrees Celsius forecast for two consecutive days. These events are considered a moderate public health risk and occur one to three times per summer season.

An extreme heat emergency (alert level two) is issued when the heat warning criteria has been met and the forecast indicates that daily highs will substantively increase day-over-day for three or more consecutive days. Extreme heat events occur 1-2 times per decade are considered to pose a very high public health risk.

City Activation Protocol

The City will activate a heat alert response protocol when a heat warning is issued. This will include activating indoor and outdoor cooling spaces, promoting neighbour health checks, and amplifying and sharing the BC HARS messaging prior to, during, and after activations through City communication channels.  

Call for Volunteers

Volunteer to be an on-call attendant for future Cooling Centre activations. The City welcomes residents interested in volunteering to be an on-call attendants to complete the application within the link below.

As a volunteer, you will be stationed at various cooling centres around Kamloops when a heat alert and response system (HARS) for the province has been activated. Cooling Centres will be open on days of activation from 12:00–8:00 pm. Activation of Cooling Centres occurs when the temperature is over 35 degrees during the day and does not go below 18 degrees at night for two or more days in a row.  

To be successful as a volunteer in this role, you should demonstrate strong communication skills and the confidence of working independently and as part of a team. It is anticipated that volunteers will have the ability to exercise tact and diplomacy when dealing with other volunteers, patrons, and visitors, and when representing the Community and Protective Services Department or the City.

Volunteer Responsibilities

  • Providing excellent customer services to fellow residents at the designated cooling centre.
  • Upholding and creating a safe, healthy, and positive environment for patrons, visitors, staff, and other volunteers.

Volunteer Requirements

  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Willingness to obtain a cleared police information check (provided by the City of Kamloops).

Volunteer Assets

  • Valid standard First Aid/CPR-C/AED certificate.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Excellent customer service skills with experience in de-escalation and conflict resolution.

Apply Now