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Temperature record broken in Lower Mainland — again

Last Updated: Thursday, July 30, 2009 | 5:47 PM PT

Vancouverites seek relief at Sunset Beach as more high-temperature records toppled.Vancouverites seek relief at Sunset Beach as more high-temperature records toppled. (CBC)

Another all-time temperature record has fallen in Vancouver's heat wave as the mercury hit 34.4 C Thursday, beating the old mark set just the day before.

On Wednesday, Vancouver baked under a high of 33.8 C, shattering a record that went back to 1960.

"It's incredibly rare for something like that to happen," CBC meteorologist Claire Martin said in reference to all-time temperature records falling on successive days.

Environment Canada records the temperature at Vancouver International Airport, technically in the city of Richmond. And as the airport is situated by the cooling waters of the Strait of Georgia, the temperature inland is at least a few degrees higher.

Lower Mainland residents are doing their best to cope.

"This is supposed to be temperate Vancouver and we're all sweltering," said Eileen Hendry, who had taken shelter in the cool of a downtown senior's centre.

"I've spent all day going from air-conditioned place to air-conditioned place," Hendry told CBC News.

Red Cross staff were at sites throughout the Lower Mainland handing out bottled water at locations where people go to pick up their income-assistance and disability cheques.

Volunteers used

"Sometimes the lineups are very long getting into the buildings, so we've deployed volunteers," said Karen Miller, disaster management co-ordinator for the Red Cross in the Lower Mainland.

The volunteers distribute water to those who are waiting in line to keep them hydrated, especially those who don't have access to clean drinking water, Miller said.

The heat continued elsewhere in B.C., hitting 34 C in Abbotsford and Port Alberni and 33 C in Kamloops, Lillooet and Lytton.

Severe thunderstorm warnings were in effect Thursday afternoon for the areas of Nicola, Fraser Canyon and Similkameen in the southern Interior.

The Environment Canada website says the main threats with these slow-moving storms are heavy rains, intense lightning and winds of up to 90 kilometres an hour.

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