It was impossible to miss the heat in Toronto this weekend.
By Friday afternoon, Environment Canada had already issued a heat warning for the entire weekend. Saturday broke a 58-year-old heat record with its scorching temperatures. And yesterday easily became the hottest September 24 in Toronto’s history.
All of this heat lead to a special air quality statement being issued for the city yesterday.
And now it’s going to reach a high of 31°C and feel like 40°C with the humidex in Toronto again today, causing the City to extend its heat warning.
Temperatures are expected to return to seasonal levels by the end of the week, but today and tomorrow remain on pace to be some of the hottest days of the
Stay cool, Toronto.
Based on information from Environment Canada, Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, has upgraded the Heat Warning to an Extended Heat Warning, until further notice.
During an Extended Heat Warning, members of the public are encouraged to visit family, friends and neighbours, especially isolated adults and seniors who are at greater risk of suffering from heat-related illness, to make sure they are cool and drinking plenty of fluids. Other groups at risk include people with chronic illnesses, individuals with limited mobility or certain mental health illnesses, infants and young children, people on certain medications, and those who are homeless.
In addition to swimming pools, beaches and air-conditioned shopping malls, Toronto has 170 air-conditioned community centres and local libraries in neighbourhoods across the city. For homeless and under-housed people, there are also 50 drop-in centres that are available at various hours seven days each week.
The following seven locations offer an air-conditioned place to rest indoors and receive a cool drink and light snack. Staff who are trained to assist residents affected by the extreme heat are on hand at the seven locations:
• Metro Hall, 55 John St. (24 hours)
• East York Civic Centre, 850 Coxwell Ave. (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
• North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge St. (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
• Driftwood Community Centre, 4401 Jane St. (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
• Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
• McGregor Community Centre, 2231 Lawrence Ave. E. (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
• Centennial Community Centre, 1967 Ellesmere Rd. (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
Cots are provided for visitors who feel ill from the heat. More information is available at bitly.com/1iWlzIP.
Members of the public are also advised to beat the heat by taking these precautions:
• Drink lots of cool water even before you feel thirsty.
• Go to air-conditioned places, including shopping malls, local libraries and community centres.
• Take cool showers or baths or use cool, wet towels to cool down.
• Wear loose, light-coloured, breathable clothing and when outdoors wear a wide-brimmed hat.
• Avoid the sun and stay in the shade or use an umbrella.
• Reschedule or plan outdoor activities during the cooler parts of the day.
• Never leave seniors, children or pets unattended in a car.
Landlords of buildings without air conditioning are encouraged to provide a dedicated cooling room for vulnerable residents to escape the heat. Community agencies are encouraged to educate clients on the risks of heat-related illness and to call or check on those clients at increased risk of heat-related illness during warnings.
When a warning is declared, those who need assistance or have heat-related inquiries may call 311.
More information and tips on how beat the heat can be found at bitly.com/1ks3FTv.
Air pollution often increases during hot weather conditions. People with heart and lung conditions, seniors and parents/guardians of young children should pay special attention to the hourly Air Quality Health Index levels and forecasts that are available at bitly.com/1neJmrP.
Information to help residents prepare for extreme weather and weatherproof their homes is available at toronto.ca/extremeweatherready.