Residents of Central and Eastern Canada, stretching from Ontario into the Maritimes, can look forward to relief from the extreme heat wave that has taken over the region throughout the past week.
The end of the week is ‘going to be a breath of fresh air’, Dr. Doug Gillham, meteorologist with The Weather Network told Yahoo Canada News. “We are going to get temporary relief starting Friday…for Ontario and Quebec spreading into Atlantic Canada.”
Weather expectations in the region will be so good in fact, Gillham says it will be “the best weekend weather of the summer” with conditions that will be “hard to top.”
Temperatures are expected to be slightly below seasonal on Friday, but the heat is expected to creep back up on Sunday. Some areas in Southern Ontario and Southern Quebec are expected to reach the upper twenties or into the thirties, but the humidity is expected to stay low.
“What was really impressive about last weekend was the tropical humidity,” Gillham said.
Next week will still be a “hot week” according to The Weather Network’s meteorologist, but people in the region won’t be faced with the same “tropical humidity,” with the humidex in the mid-thirties to near fourty.
“More of…what you expect from a hot week in July, it’s warmer than seasonal but it’s not going to be record-breaking,” Gillham says.
Heat causing deaths in Quebec
As the extreme humidity is on its way out, the number of heat-related deaths in Quebec continues to rise.
To date, Quebec health authorities have attributed at least 33 deaths to the heat wave in the area, including at least 18 deaths in Montreal.
In a statement from the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services, the government explains that the people who died were outside the network’s institutions and considered “vulnerable,” which includes those who were dealing with consumption problems and chronic illness.
“It’s important to remember that no one is immune to the effects of extreme heat on health, but some people are more vulnerable,” Lucie Charlebois, Minister Responsible for Rehabilitation, Youth Protection, Public Health and Healthy Living said in a statement.
Back in July 2010, more than 100 people in the Montreal area died due to the heat wave. According to Environment Canada’s data, average highs in Montreal in July 2010 totaled 27.8 C, with top temperatures around 34 C from July 6th to 8th. The average highs in the city in July 2018 have already reached 34 C, with the hottest day reaching 35.5 C.
Effects of extreme heat
According to The Weather Network, these high temperature can cause muscles cramping and a heat rash can form with tiny red spots developing on the skin.
Confusion and dizziness are also common with exposure to these intense temperatures, with something as serious as heat stroke developing when your body’s ability to handle the heat fails entirely. At times, symptoms can go unnoticed, but here’s what to watch out for:
Environment Canada is warning people in these extreme temperature and intense humidity to drink six to eight glasses of water a day, limit physical activity and spend at least two hours in air conditioned or cool places.