Canada heat wave-linked death toll doubles to 33

People cool down in a public pool in Montreal Thursday

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, seven in the Eastern Townships, five in central Quebec, two just south of Montreal and one in Laval, Horacio Arruda, Quebec's director of public health, told a news conference.

Environment Canada forecast a maximum of 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) on Thursday with a heat index (what the temperature feels like to the human body) of up to 45 Celsius.

A government heat warning is in place for the region, but meteorologists are forecasting a drop in temperatures at the end of the week.

Numerous victims were men over the age of 50 living alone in private apartments and seniors' residences, according to David Kaiser of Montreal's public health department.

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Officials say the heat wave is the worst the province has seen in decades.

According to the Ministry, numerous dead were over 65 years of age and had physical or mental health problems.

None of the victims had air conditioning, and Kaiser said majority died inside of their homes.

No deaths had been reported for the same period in the neighboring province of Ontario, which has also sizzled under extremely high temperatures.

Large parts of Ontario have experienced similarly sweltering conditions this week, though unlike Quebec no deaths have been reported there.

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