Delta libraries and recreation centres are serving as cooling centres until at least Tuesday (June 29) as a “dangerous long duration heat wave” rocks the region.
Starting Friday, June 25, the City of Delta is using North Delta’s George Mackie Library, Ladner Pioneer Library and Tsawwassen Library as places residents can escape the record-breaking heat.
All three libraries will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Thursday.
As well, the lobbies of several City of Delta recreation centres are open to those looking for a little air conditioning and some water to stay hydrated. On Monday, North Delta Recreation Centre is open from 6 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., while Sungod Recreation Centre is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. As of Monday morning, the city had not posted cooling centre hours for Tuesday onward.
Other recreation centres operating as cooling centres Monday include Winskill Aquatic and Fitness Centre (6 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and South Delta Recreation Centre (8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. for the main building, 6 a.m. to 12 a.m. for the arena). Ladner Leisure Centre is listed as a cooling centre however is closed for “operational maintenance.”
On Friday morning, Environment Canada issued updated weather warnings for most parts of the province, warning of a “dangerous long duration heat wave” lasting until at least Wednesday.
An exceptionally strong ridge of high pressure is expected to bring daytime temperatures in Metro Vancouver raging form 29-38 C, with overnight lows of 18-21 C. Humidex values during this period will reach the high 30s to possibly the low 40s.
“The duration of this heat wave is concerning as there is little relief at night with elevated overnight temperatures,” reads the warning from Environment Canada. This record-breaking heat event will increase the potential for heat-related illnesses.”
Environment Canada recommends residents drink plenty of water even before they feel thirsty and stay in a cool place.
Further, they advise people check on older family members, friends and neighbours to make sure they are cool and drinking enough water, and make sure they never leave people or pets inside parked vehicles.
Outdoor workers should take regularly scheduled breaks in a cool place.
People are urged to watch for the symptoms of heat illness, including dizziness/fainting, nausea/vomiting, rapid breathing and heartbeat, extreme thirst, and decreased urination with unusually dark urine.
For more about heat-related illness and how to protect yourself, visit healthlinkbc.ca/healthlinkbc-files/heat-related-illness or call HealthLinkBC at 8-1-1.
In related news, the City of Delta raised its fire hazard rating to “high” Friday.
Residents are reminded that residential backyard fires, campfires and open cooking fires (except in approved briquette and propane barbecues) remain banned year-round in all areas of Delta, and smoking is prohibited in all Delta parks and open spaces.
Deltans are also urged to use caution when smoking and to make sure cigarettes and matches are fully extinguished before disposing of them in a metal or glass receptacle.
Any unauthorized activity that poses a risk of fire should be reported to the Delta Police Department’s 24/7 non-emergency line at 604-946-4411.
To report any fires, call 911.