Environment and Climate Change Canada has extended the Heat Warning for Toronto to today, Monday, July 6 and the rest of this week.
Environment and Climate Change Canada issues a Heat Warning when it forecasts two or more consecutive days with daytime maximum temperatures of 31°C or warmer, together with minimum nighttime temperatures of 20°C or warmer, or when there is a forecast of two or more consecutive days with humidex values expected to reach 40 or higher.
Extreme heat is associated with negative health impacts ranging from heat stress to heat stroke and death. During periods of hot weather, the safety of all residents is the priority.
Starting at 11 a.m. today the City of Toronto opened 15 Emergency Cooling Centres (ECCs) for the duration of the Heat Warning. Malvern Recreation Community Centre cooling centre remains closed for air conditioning repairs. The cooling centre has been relocated to Burrows Hall Community Centre (1081 Progress Ave., Scarborough) until the issue at Malvern Recreation Community Centre is resolved.
An interactive map is available to help those who need to locate an ECC near them. Please note that the location in South Etobicoke has changed from Ourland Community Centre to Mimico-Coronation Club House, 10 Judson St.
The ECCs offer a publicly accessible, air-conditioned place for residents to rest indoors and receive a cool drink. Staff who are trained to assist residents affected by the extreme heat are on hand. Strict infection prevention and control measures are in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The ECCs are available to residents if they do not have access to a cool space and cannot keep cool in their home or outdoors. All the centres operate during Heat Warnings only, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., except Metro Hall, 55 John St., which runs 24 hours during Heat Warnings.
Starting tomorrow, Tuesday, July 7, it will be mandatory for the public to wear non-medical masks at all ECCS. A mask will be provided at the ECC to those without a mask who want to enter.
To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, people who are at higher risk for COVID-19 (e.g., persons who are more than 70 years of age), or who are required to self-isolate due to COVID-19 (e.g., symptoms, high risk exposure), may visit an ECC, if necessary, to beat the heat while taking the following precautions:
When arriving at an ECC, inform a staff member prior to entering of your COVID-19 or self-isolation status during the screening process. ECC staff will screen all visitors and accommodate those who are required to self-isolate in an alternate space separate from the main ECC area.
To help residents cool off during the Heat Warning, the following eight pools will be open until 11:45 p.m. tonight:
For up-to-date information on extended pool hours, pool locations and regular operating hours, call 311 or visit toronto.ca/swim.
Tips to protect yourself from the heat are available at toronto.ca/keepcool. When a Heat Warning is declared, those who need assistance or have heat-related inquiries can call 311.
The City’s Streets to Homes outreach team is doing wellness checks for clients who live outdoors. During a Heat Warning, two outreach teams active in the city (Streets to Homes and Fred Victor Keep Cool Project) do wellness checks, advise clients of the open ECC locations and the TTC assistance to get them to a site, provide them with water, and recommend, if they stay outdoors, to move to a shaded area.
The City’s updated 2020 Heat Relief Strategy reflects the current public health advice related to COVID-19, with guidance for safely operating apartment building cooling rooms and other tips for apartment building landlords and tenants. Toronto Community Housing provides residents with access to cooling in many of their buildings during Heat Warnings. More information for landlords is available on the RentSafeTO web page.
Community agencies are encouraged to educate clients on the risks of heat-related illness and to call, text or video chat with those clients who are at increased risk of heat-related illness during Heat Warnings.
Residents are reminded to water the trees on their yard, especially newly planted trees. With extra watering, younger and smaller trees can catch up to larger and more mature trees within 5 years. During periods of little or no rain, a newly planted tree should be watered approximately twice a week. Trees should be provided at least 8 litres of water per watering. Water in the evening or early morning in order to minimize the amount lost due to evaporation under the heat of the sun. Watering throughout the tree’s life is beneficial particularly if applied during prolonged dry periods of the summer.
B-roll footage of the ECCs is available for the media’s use at toronto.ca/home/media-room/video-b-roll-images.
The Environment and Climate Change Canada Heat Warning statement for Toronto is available at weather.gc.ca/warnings/index_e.html.
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