The City of Revelstoke is taking a wait-and-see approach to this weekend’s forecast of highs of 36C on Friday and 37C on Saturday.
When contacted on July 27, the city said it doesn’t currently have plans to open a cooling centre, such as at the community centre. A spokesperson said the city waits for direction from Emergency Management B.C. (EMBC).
When contacted, EMBC clarified to say municipalities are free to take whatever steps are appropriate. The spokesperson said the distinction is that when EMBC contacts a municipality with direction to take emergency public health measures, the municipality is compensated for the costs.
A city spokesperson said the cooling centre wasn’t well utilized during the recent ‘heat dome.’
Between June 25 and July 1 during the ‘heat dome’ event, there were 777 deaths recorded in B.C., up from an average of 200 deaths for the same period between 2016–2020.
The wildfire smoke that has arrived in force in Revelstoke since July 12 is a complicating factor. Many homes in Revelstoke don’t have air conditioning and rely on opening windows during the night to cool down residences. With the smoke, many more are opting to keep the windows closed.
We’ll update with any health communications directions from local authorities ahead of the hot weekend. In the meantime, think of those around you who may be vulnerable to the coming heat wave.
Interior Health referred us to local officials and also pointed to an IH information sheet on heat and health.
For background, check out our stories on the heat dome event here and here.