33 deaths in Quebec attributed to heat: health officials

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MONTREAL — Quebec health authorities say 33 people in the province have died from heat-related complications over the last few days.

The number includes 18 in Montreal, which has been hit hard by muggy temperatures for several days.

Other areas affected are the Eastern Townships (seven), central Quebec (five), the Monteregie region south of Montreal (two) and Laval (one).

Public Health Minister Lucie Charlebois told a news conference Thursday 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.

No deaths have been reported in other provinces.

The ambulance service that serves a large swath of the Montreal area has called on people to refrain from calling unless it is a real emergency.

Urgences-sante says it has been inundated by the volume of calls — 1,200 calls per day in Montreal and nearby Laval over the past four days, which is 30 per cent more than usual on busy days.

The Canadian Press

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