Warnings for extreme cold linger across BC Tuesday and people are urged to prepare accordingly when venturing outside, as Environment Canada warns of frostbite and hypothermia occurring within minutes in some areas.
Twenty-two of the regions in BC under weather alerts on Tuesday morning were for extreme cold, while 11 were under Arctic outflow warnings.
“While the Arctic air will maintain the cold wind chill through the end of December, the wind chill values will vary through this period as temperatures fluctuate and wind speeds rise and fall,” Environment Canada said in one of its numerous warnings.
“Frostbite and hypothermia can occur within minutes if adequate precautions are not taken when outdoors. Ensure that shelter is provided for pets and outdoor animals. Be prepared for unusually cold temperatures and strong winds.”
While some regions are set to warm up on Wednesday, other regional warnings remain in place until the new year.
Nearly a dozen records were broken on Monday, with Quesnel reaching -38.9C and Vancouver dropping to -15.3C.
Various “warming centres” providing shelter, food, and hot drinks remain open across Vancouver and other areas of the province to prevent the city’s homeless population from freezing to death as the bone-chilling winds sweep the city.
Proof of vaccination is not required to access the warming centres which are temporarily exempt from public health orders announced on December 21.
Much of western Canada is experiencing bitterly cold winds, as various regions of Alberta and Saskatchewan have seen temperatures drop below -40C in recent days.
Reid Small is a BC-based reporter for the Western Standard