Despite just experiencing the hottest day of the year so far, it’s still going to be a few more days until landlords are required to put on air conditioning, says the City of Toronto.
On Monday, a warm and humid airmass moved into Southern Ontario and daytime temperatures soared to the low thirties with overnight lows near 20°C.
When the sudden rise in temperature hit, a Toronto Twitter user reached out to 311 Toronto over Twitter asking if something could be done about the AC still not being turned on in their apartment, which is “heavily populated with seniors.”
@311Toronto can something be done about the A/C not being put on at apartment building 2877 Ellesmere Rd in Scarborough? Heavily populated with seniors. There’s going to be a serious health issue for someone if something isn’t done I suspect the apartments are near 35 degrees!!!
— P Riddy (@Utd4Life78) May 28, 2018
311 Toronto replied within hours saying that, “air Conditioning should go on, if provided/supplied by the property owner, from June 2nd to Sept. 14th to maintain an indoor temperature of not more than 26 Celsius. Municipal Licensing & Standards is unable to take any action outside of these dates.”
Air Conditioning should go on, if provided/supplied by the property owner, from June 2nd to Sept. 14th to maintain an indoor temperature of not more than 26 degrees Celsius. Municipal Licensing & Standards is unable to take any action outside of these dates. ^de
— 311 Toronto (@311Toronto) May 28, 2018
So, despite hot and humid temperatures on the forecast for the rest of the week, with Thursday reaching a high of 26°C and feeling like 32°C with the humidex, the city’s bylaws about heat and air conditioning in residential properties says AC won’t be turned on until June 2.
Last week Mayor John Tory urged landlords to accommodate tenants who may suffer from the unseasonably warm weather.
“I urge all landlords to protect their tenants from extreme indoor temperatures by switching off the heat and turning the air conditioning on where possible,” said Tory in a statement on Thursday.
Tory isn’t the only one demanding change. Last month, Councillor Josh Matlow put forward a motion to establish Heat Alert Days, on which landlords can be permitted to turn off heat and, turn on air conditioning in conjunction with the existing heat alert system.
The motion was unanimously adopted by Council.
Mayor Tory & I are asking landlords to use common sense & protect their tenants’ health. Regardless of the date, if it’s hot outside, the bylaw allows for turning the building’s heat off & the AC on. Of course, if it’s cold outside, apartment temps should be at least 21C (70F)
— Josh Matlow (@JoshMatlow) May 24, 2018
Over the weekend, Environment Canada released a special weather statement, that provided tips for how to cool down during the heat. According to Environment Canada:
You are advised to 1) drink plenty of cool liquids before feeling thirsty; and 2) keep cool by dressing for the weather and spending a few hours each day in a cool place.
If you live in an apartment that is still without AC, make sure to follow these tips if you’re feeling too hot in the coming days.