Pedro Sanchez claims ‘more than 500 people’ died during latest heatwave in Spain

SPAIN’S Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, has claimed that the current heatwave has claimed over 500 lives.

Spain has been gripped by a heatwave affecting much of Western Europe, which pushed temperatures as high as 45 degrees in some regions last week, sparking dozens of wildfires.

Speaking on Wednesday during a visit to Zaragoza area firefighters, Sanchez said: “During this heatwave, more than 500 people died because of such high temperatures, according to the statistics.”

The Prime Minister was referring to a the Carlos III Health Institute estimate based on excess mortality rates.

“I ask citizens to exercise extreme caution as the climate emergency is a reality,” said Sanchez.

The Institute estimates the number of heat-related deaths based on the number of excess deaths when compared to the average in previous years.

It has not qualified these figures in recent days, stressing that it was a statistical estimate and not a record of official deaths.

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