233 people die in Canada amid heatwave

Ottawa: At least 233 people have died amid sweltering heat in Canada’s British Columbia province since a record-breaking heatwave began to hit the country’s western region since June 25.

To have a heatwave last this long and be this hot in Canada is completely unprecedented in history, Xinhua news agency quoted local media reports as saying on Wednesday.

The heatwave led to stores in British Columbia run out of air conditioners and fans.

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Hotels in Vancouver were fully booked on Monday, drawing locals desperate for escape.

Police in Metro Vancouver said on Tuesday they had responded to more than 100 sudden deaths since the heat wave took hold.

Cities in British Columbia in western Canada broke at least 59 previous temperature records, including Lytton, where nationwide records have been set and broken in rapid succession.

British Columbia Premier John Horgan said the hottest week the province had ever experienced had led to “disastrous consequences for families and for communities”.

The number of heat-related fatalities is likely to rise as some areas say they have responded to sudden death incidents but have yet to collate the numbers.

The heatwave is now moving eastward in the country.

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