Canada Post says it cancelled mail delivery for the Okanagan communities of Kelowna, Penticton and Oliver on Wednesday because of wildfire smoke.
In a social media post, Canada Post said due to poor air quality in the Okanagan Valley, caused by smoke from wildfires, a red service alert was issued.
“The safety of our employees is our No. 1 priority,” said Canada Post.
“A red service alert means that we are suspending delivery for the day and not sending our delivery agents out, as air quality conditions have made it unsafe.”
Canada Post said it will continue to assess the situation and that delivery will resume once it’s deemed safe to do so.
According to B.C.’s air quality health index (AQHI), the Central Okanagan had a moderate rating (6 out of 10-plus). A rating for the South Okanagan was not available, though it was projected to be moderate (5) tonight and tomorrow.
However, the North Okanagan had a 10-plus forecast, the highest possible rating.
The Okanagan is also under two special weather statements from Environment Canada.
The first is for increasing temperatures, where the mercury is expected to reach 34 to 35 C this week.
The second is a smoky skies bulletin, with the national weather agency stating, “individuals may experience symptoms such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches or shortness of breath.
“Children, seniors, and those with cardiovascular or lung disease, such as asthma, are especially at risk.”