Canada is experiencing a heatwave, and there are reports of more than 230 deaths due to this factor. Lisa Lapointe, the chief coroner of British Columbia, described the situation as a “significant increase in deaths reported where it is suspected that extreme heat has been contributory." Officials say it is a historic heatwave. It brought with it record-high temperatures: 121.3F in Lytton, British Columbia. The chief coroner added that so far, there are reports of at least 233 deaths. This could increase based on updating the records.

Teams are gathering data to assess whether the high temperatures led to the deaths.

They have indicated that environmental heat exposure could result in severe or fatal results. Those vulnerable include older adults, infants, young children, and those who suffer from chronic ailments. Normally, when the heat becomes unbearable, people make a beeline for cooling off in nearby lakes or pools. The demand for anything cold increases. These mean air-conditioners, ice creams, cold drinks, etcetera. CNN adds that the authorities had reported a spike in sudden deaths for some other areas. These were Vancouver and nearby Burnaby and Surrey. The heatwave has already struck regions in the U.S. Pacific Northwest.

The heatwave deaths have delayed response

Officers of the Vancouver police department have responded to several sudden deaths since the heatwave began.

These deaths have reduced the availability of frontline resources. There have been consequential delays in response time at certain places. CNN quotes an official saying – “We've never experienced anything like this heat in Vancouver." The mercury hovered between 98.6 degrees to 101.5 degrees in downtown Vancouver. Royal Canadian Mounted Police RCMP attended to several sudden deaths in nearby Surrey.

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It is necessary to ascertain the cause of death in each case. The authorities say RCMP is faced with an unusually large number of deaths since the start of the extreme weather conditions. An official of Burnaby RCMP explains that the weather can affect vulnerable sections of society. They would include the elderly and those who have issues of health.

Many of the victims are senior citizens. The advice for the elderly is to take precautions to protect themselves from heat injuries. They must avoid exposure to high temperatures and restrict outdoor Travel to the minimum. In June 2018, heatwaves in Europe led to many deaths.

An unprecedented heatwave hits Canada

According to The BBC, Canada is in the grip of a heatwave that has taken many lives and has broken temperature records. The British Columbia police had to handle several deaths related to older people. Heatwave could be a contributory factor. In the recent past, temperatures in Canada had never gone beyond 45 C (113 F), but Lytton in British Columbia recorded its highest ever temperature of 49.5C (121F) for a third straight day.

An official of the Canadian Police advised people to watch neighbors, family members, and seniors. Some of them could be vulnerable members and require assistance. Heatwave in western parts of America had sent people hurrying for cover.

Travel is not advisable when a heatwave strikes

A resident of the village of Lytton admits it is “almost impossible” to go outside. She sent her daughters to stay with her family in British Columbia, where temperatures are not as high in the place she stays. The BBC quotes her saying – “We're trying to stay indoors as much as possible.” She is right. People should avoid travel in these weather conditions. Environment Canada has issued heat warnings for different places. A senior climatologist comments that Dubai might be cooler. He adds that such high temperatures are unthinkable in a country that is the second coldest globally and the snowiest.