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Heat wave gripping Western Canada loosens on the coast, slides into Manitoba

38.1 C in the Nahanni Bute region highest temperature ever recorded in the Northwest Territories
Poppy Collins, five, sits under a water umbrella to try and beat the heat at a splash park in Olds, Alta., Monday, June 28, 2021. Environment Canada warns the torrid heat wave that has settled over much of Western Canada won’t lift for days. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

A record-breaking heat wave could ease over parts of British Columbia, Yukon and Northwest Territories by Wednesday but any reprieve for the Prairie provinces is further off.

Environment Canada says the “historic” weather system shattered 103 heat records across B.C., Alberta, Yukon and N.W.T. on Monday.

Those records include a new Canadian all-time high temperature of 47.9 C set in Lytton, B.C., smashing the previous record of 46.6 set in the same village a day earlier.

All-time maximum temperature records were also set in the Alberta communities of Jasper, Grande Prairie and Hendrickson Creek for a second day as the mercury hit the mid- to high-30s.

It was 38.1 C in the Nahanni Bute region of N.W.T., the highest temperature ever recorded in the territory.

The weather office has also issued four heat warnings for regions along Manitoba’s western boundary.

Forecasters warn extreme conditions will persist across the Prairies at least through this week and possibly into next.

Meanwhile, in Victoria, Environment Canada is forecasting a high of 29 C Tuesday, with a low of 17 C overnight and highs in the mid-20s later in the week. This after thermometers peaked there at 39.8 C Monday, smashing the 1995 record of 32.4 C.

As the sweltering system slides out of B.C., dipping temperatures to more seasonal values, the weather office is calling for a chance of lightning Wednesday night in the parched southern Interior. It’s the same area where evacuation alerts were issued Monday as a wildfire grew to nearly two square kilometres.

The BC Wildfire Service announced a provincewide campfire ban effective at noon Wednesday, as the wildfire risk across most of B.C. is rated at high to extreme.

The ban, which also covers fireworks, torches and burn barrels, remains in effect until Oct. 15.

—The Canadian Press (with a file from Black Press Media)

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