The Middlesex-London region will be under two single-day Heat Alerts this weekend. The current Environment Canada forecast calls for temperatures to climb to a high of 30º Celsius for Saturday, with humidex values reaching 40. It is expected there will be a brief reprieve into Sunday morning when the overnight temperature falls to 19º Celsius, just below the Middlesex-London Health Unit’s Heat Alert criteria. The hot and sticky conditions are expected to return on Sunday with a high reaching 31º Celsius.
Even with the forecast also calling for a chance of showers or thunderstorms, the conditions over the next few days meet the Health Unit’s criteria for two separate, one-day Heat Alerts, Saturday and Sunday. Based on the current forecast, Sunday’s Heat Alert will remain in effect until Monday morning, when the daytime high is expected to reach 26º Celsius.
The Health Unit issues Heat Alerts when one or more of the following criteria are met:
- Environment Canada issues a forecast calling for a day-time high of 31º Celsius or higher and a forecast low of 20º Celsius or higher, or;
- Environment Canada issues a forecast calling for Humidex values to reach 40 or higher.
The Health Unit recommends the following tips to reduce the risk of heat-related illness:
- Drink plenty of water and natural juices throughout the day, even if you don't feel very thirsty. Sip, rather than guzzle fluids to stay hydrated.
- Never leave a child or pet in a parked car or sleeping outside in direct sunlight.
- Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages, as well as coffee and cola.
- When possible, avoid spending too much time outdoors. If you must be outside, seek shade as much as possible. Plan outdoor activities in the early morning or evening.
- Wear a wide-brimmed hat when outdoors.
- Keep shades or drapes drawn and blinds closed on the sunny side of your home.
- Avoid turning on electric lights in your home.
- Take a cool bath or shower periodically or cool down with cool, wet towels.
- Avoid eating heavy meals and using your oven.
- Avoid intense or moderately intense physical activity.
- Use fans to draw cool air at night, but do not rely on a fan as a primary cooling device during extended periods of excessive heat.
- Reduce the use of personal vehicles, stop unnecessary idling; avoid using oil-based paints and glues, pesticides, and gas-powered small engines.
Visit www.healthunit.com/extreme-heat for more information on heat-related illness.
Dan Flaherty, Communications Manager, Middlesex-London Health Unit,
David Pavletic, Food Safety & Healthy Environments Manager, Middlesex-London