Vancouver: Environment Canada is encouraging people to keep cool and drink lots of water as British Columbia’s South Coast braces for a heat wave.

A massive ridge of high pressure over the area through to Thursday is expected to push temperatures in many communities to the mid to high 30s.

Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Howe Sound, the Sunshine Coast and south and eastern Vancouver Island are all forecast to feel the burn until at least the middle of the week.

The heat doesn’t bode well for the province’s wildfire situation, with danger ratings to remain high to extreme across much of southern B.C.

Environment Canada recommends young children, pregnant women, older people and anyone working or exercising in the heat to be especially cautious.

The agency is also warning pet owners not to leave their animals inside parked vehicles.

The Canadian Press