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HomeNewsProvince puts all hands on deck with second heat wave approaching

Province puts all hands on deck with second heat wave approaching

The BC Government is taking action as temperatures are expected to rise in the next 24 to 48 hours.

Our provincial government is mobilizing health authorities, with Emergency Management BC (EMBC) and the BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS) also assisting.

“As we have experienced before, extreme heat is dangerous to our vulnerable populations, including seniors. That’s why we have all hands on deck, including asking all British Columbians to help out their family members, neighbours and others during this extraordinary time. We are making sure all health services – including health authorities, BCEHS and EMBC – are ‘all systems go’ to help out anyone who is experiencing heat and/or smoke-related challenges.”

Dr Sarah Henderson, scientific director in environmental health services, BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC), states everyone should try to keep themselves, and loved ones cool.

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This includes taking extra care to check in with people most at risk, especially those who have chronic health conditions or older adults who live alone.

In addition, residents should drink lots of water, limiting physical activity outdoors, and finding a cool air-conditioned place and keep hydrated.

During heat alerts, the Province works together with health authorities and local governments to take action to protect people and communities. Actions immediately underway include:

EMBC is working with local communities and First Nations and made support available to them, including reimbursements for:

  • Opening cooling centres. To locate a cooling centre, residents are urged to check their local governments, regional district or area First Nations websites or social media;
  • transportation to and from cooling centres in communities where no scheduled public or reasonable transportation exists;
  • Staff wages and overtime to open a civic facility that would otherwise not be open; and
    water for distribution within the facility.

BCEHS staff have been redeployed where needed to assist people in need during this heatwave. The chief ambulance officer is working with paramedics and dispatch leaders to ensure staff are prepared for the hotter weather.

Supports include increased clinical support in dispatch centres 24/7 for supporting 911 calls, and an increased number of managers support for front-line operations.

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