Vancouver: Western Canada and north-west US continue to reel under the effect of a record-breaking heat wave. The high temperatures have left several dead, even as the authorities brace for a longer period of higher temperature. The threat of wildfires, too, looms over the area.
The worst of the heat wave was over on Wednesday. However, the trail of deaths is significant.
The state of Oregon reported 63 deaths, much higher than 12 deaths between 2017 and 2019. The Oregon Health Authority said that hospitals across the state had reported hundreds of people coming in with heat-related ailments in recent days.
There were 45 since Friday in Multnomah County, which includes Portland.
British Columbia reported at least 486 deaths over five days.
It is believed that climate change could have contributed to the magnitude of the heat wave this time.
Lytton in British Columbia broke Canada’s all-time high temperature record, reporting 49.6 degree Celsius. Before this, the highest temperature in the country was 45 degree C in Saskatchewan in 1937.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said, “We’ve been seeing more and more of this time of extreme weather event in the past years. So realistically, we know that this heatwave won’t be the last.”
US President Joe Biden warned that the US was behind in preparing for what could be a record number of forest fires this year.
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