Expect sun and heat in the Okanagan and possible thunderstorms in the Shuswap. (Pixabay)

Heat warning for Okanagan, thunderstorm watch for Shuswap

Expect highs of 35 C in the Okanagan and strong winds in the Shuswap area

The hot summer continues with a heat warning in effect for the Okanagan Valley.

Environment Canada is forecasting temperatures to reach 35 C with overnight lows near 18 C. The increase in temperature is due to a ridge of high pressure over southern B.C.

Monday’s (Aug. 17) temperatures will be two to three degrees cooler than yesterday, reaching mid-30s again on Tuesday (Aug. 18).

Environment Canada meteorologist Carmen Hartt said residents can expect a pattern change towards the end of the week and perhaps even starting on Tuesday.

“Temperatures will go back towards normal for this time of year, which is closer to the mid or high 20s,” she said.

“Part of the heat warning is the overnight low. One of the conditions for having the warning is that we have to have two consecutive daytime highs of 35 or higher, with overnight lows of 17 or higher.”

The weekend was so hot in the Okanagan that two areas broke temperature records. Penticton set the new record at 36.5 C, beating the old record of 35.6 C, which was set in 1967. Summerland broke its 2008 record of 36.5 C with 36.8.

However, the story is a little different for the Shuswap area. Environment Canada said conditions are shaping up to be ideal for severe thunderstorms, with strong wind gusts, large hail and heavy rain.

A severe thunderstorm watch is now in effect for the area.

“We’re seeing a pretty unstable air mass over that area today. We haven’t seen any thunderstorms break out yet, but it’s still morning,” Hart said.

She said as the day continues and the atmosphere heats up, the area will see more instability that will then move on to localized showers.

“If there’s enough instability, the showers could produce thunderstorms and we could see some small hail and some gusty winds as well but they’ll be quite isolated, and they usually begin and end quickly.”

READ: Local governments call on Okanagan boaters to keep wakes low in shallow water


Twila Amato
Video journalist, Black Press Okanagan
Email me at twila.amato@blackpress.ca
Follow me on Twitter

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