Maritimers cope with early season heat

With heat warnings in place, Maritimers found themselves dealing with unusual and uncomfortable weather Monday, with more on the way for Tuesday.

At the Northwood Complex in Halifax, longtime resident Bill Mont admitted he'd been caught off guard.

"We've survived up 'til now, and I've got fans going and stuff like that but, I'm not up on it yet this year, so I better get cracking pretty quick because it will be hot in my room," he said.

"With this kind of heat coming on, I'm going to be going down to the Public Gardens in the shade somewhere," said the 92-year-old entrepreneur, who remains well known in Halifax.

Fifty-three residents died at Northwood during the first wave of COVID-19.

In a statement to CTV News, a spokesperson for Nova Scotia Health and Wellness said seniors homes are required to be prepared for extreme temperatures.

"All licenced long-term care facilities are required to provide ventilation to support a comfortable environment for both staff and residents," said Marla MacInnis.

"Long-term care facilities are also required to have policies and procedures in place to address extreme internal temperatures and ensure they are at acceptable levels. Information is routinely provided to our licenced facilities on how to protect against and recognize the signs of heat stress."

Despite the uncomfortably warm temperatures across the region, COVID-19 protocols seem to be holding.

The Halifax waterfront was busy Monday afternoon, but didn't appear to be overcrowded.

Business was brisk at restaurantsin the area, currently limited to serving customers on outdoor patios.

There were some lineups for lunch, but tables remained spaced with some providing Plexiglas barriers between diners.

It was also busy on the Saint John waterfront, but significantly cooler than in Halifax.

Still, the province's Chief Medical Health Officer, Dr. Jennifer Russell, offered some heat advice during the provincial COVID briefing, urging residents to keep hydrated, avoid excess sun exposure, and plan outdoor activities during cooler parts of the day.

"While respecting COVID-19 restrictions, please check-in with vulnerable neighbours and family members, especially the elderly, to make sure they are coping with the heat," added Russell.

It's advice Halifax carpenter John Bain echoed, as he worked on a project at a local church.

"You want to pace yourself on a day like this.  Keep lots of fluids in.  See if you can work in the shade if you can," he said.

Heat records were shattered in many parts of the region Monday, and temperatures were expected to soar again on Tuesday before cooling off to more seasonal weather by mid-week.