Record-breaking heat wave kills 33 people in Quebec

Death Toll Rising In Canada Heat Wave

Heat warnings were in effect across southern Quebec, Ontario and the Atlantic region of the country, but temperatures were expected to drop overnight.

This is the worst heat wave residents of Quebec have seen in decades.

Public Health Minister Lucie Charlebois said none of the deaths occurred in a hospital or long-term care facility and that the people who died were already suffering from health problems, including mental-health issues or drug and alcohol addiction.

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The sweltering weather began last Friday with temperatures hitting 35C (95F), high humidity and, on the last day, a smog advisory. However, he said public health officials believe the death toll may rise depending on how people adjust after such extreme temperatures.

The victims who succumbed to the heat were between the ages of 50 and 85 and did not have air conditioning in their residences and lived alone in apartments, officials said.

The other victims were reported in the southwest of the French-Canadian province, the Quebec health ministry said. Temperatures were in the mid-90s for Montreal on Sunday and Monday, about 20 degrees higher than the normal temperatures this time of year.

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Environment Canada says the areas most affected by the heat wave include the Island of Montreal, Châteauguay/La Prairie, Laval, Longueuil and Varennes.

People with chronic illness are particularly at risk, said Nicola Dulisse, head of Urgences-sante.

A heatwave in Canada has killed 33 people in the past week.

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Southern Ontario still under extreme heat warning
The mercury has regularly topped 30 degrees since Friday in southern Quebec, accompanied by stifling humidity levels. However, daytime highs are still expected in the low thirties in the next two days.

Officials urged residents to keep themselves hydrated and remain in the shade, while Montreal opened pools and air conditioned spaces to the public.

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