The following news release was issued today by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit regarding extreme heat warnings for the region this Canada Day long weekend.
The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit is warning the public that the extreme heat expected this weekend can be dangerous.
Environment and Climate Change Canada’s forecast indicates that all of Simcoe is in for four to six days of temperatures that will feel like the mid-40s. Night time temperatures will not provide much relief. Similar forecasts are also predicted for Muskoka, although a heat warning has not been issued for this area.
When temperatures stay above 31°C for more than a day, or the humidity index exceeds 40°C, over exertion will increase the risk of heat exhaustion, dehydration or heat stroke.
During the heat, you should be taking care to avoid overheating:
• Be sure to drink plenty of fluids (non-caffeinated). Don’t wait until you feel thirsty – that’s a sign that your body is already becoming dehydrated.
• Stay cool indoors and if possible, seek out an air-conditioned place.
• If you must be outside, stay in the shade and make sure you wear and reapply sunscreen, a broad-brimmed hat, sunglasses and lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
• Electric fans provide comfort by increasing evaporation, however when the conditions are extreme, fans will not prevent heat-related illness.
• Keep physical activity to a minimum.
• Draw blinds or curtains to prevent radiant heat from entering homes.
Extreme heat over several days increases the health risks for vulnerable people. Keep an eye on infants and young children, the frail elderly and people with chronic lung conditions or taking certain prescription drugs, as they are more vulnerable to harm from overheating.
For more information about extreme heat, visit www.smdhu.org/heat or call Health Connection at 721-7520 (1-877-721-7520) Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
A weather advisory issued today by Environment Canada follows:
Heat Warning in effect for:
• Barrie - Collingwood - Hillsdale
• Orillia - Lagoon City - Washago
An extreme heat event for the Canada Day long weekend.
Beginning today and continuing through the Canada Day long weekend, daytime highs are forecast to reach the low to mid 30s with humidex values into the mid 40s. Overnight low temperatures are expected to be in the low to mid 20s, except high teens in some rural areas, providing little or no relief from the heat.
Current indications suggest hot temperatures could persist through next week. This will be the most significant heat event in the past few years.
Extreme heat affects everyone.
The risks are greater for young children, pregnant women, older adults, people with chronic illnesses and people working or exercising outdoors.
Watch for the effects of heat illness: swelling, rash, cramps, fainting, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and the worsening of some health conditions.
Please continue to monitor alerts and forecasts issued by Environment Canada. To report severe weather, send an email to ONstorm@canada.ca or tweet reports using #ONStorm.