Six dead in Montreal since start of heat wave

TORONTO (REUTERS) - Six people have died in Montreal in connection with a heat wave that prompted the city to enact an emergency response plan, the CBC News reported on Tuesday (July 3).

Much of central and eastern Canada has endured hot, humid weather for several days, and Montreal health officials preemptively raised the city's response level to "intervention" from "alert" after a spike in heat-related calls to the government's health information line and to ambulances.

Environment Canada issued a heat warning for southern Quebec, which includes Montreal. The advisory was expected to be in place until Thursday.

Dr Mylene Drouin, Montreal's public health director, was quoted by CBC News as saying officials wanted to avoid a recurrence of what happened in the Montreal area in 2010 when extreme heat caused 106 deaths.

Mayor Valerie Plante said the city has distributed 17,000 litres of water to organizations that work with the city's homeless population and extended opening hours for swimming pools and water pads.

Plante also said as part of the city's plan, firemen and police officers will be visiting about 5,000 homes in Montreal. They have visited 1,300 residences so far.