Deaths in Moscow double in record heat

The number of people dying each day in Moscow has doubled as temperatures reach record heights, the city's health department said on Monday. Russia is in the grip of a heatwave that meteorologists describe as unprecedented in all the country's 1,000-year history.


The rate of deaths in the capital usually averages at 360-380 per day but has risen to 700 daily in the summer heat, according to the head of Moscow's health department, Andrei Seltsovsky.

Moscow smoke cloud in pictures
Alexandre Billette/RFI

Out of 1,500 spaces in the city's morgue, 1,300 are currently occupied, he added.

Wildfires and burning peat bogs in central Russia have sent clouds of acrid smoke over the capital.

Carbon monoxide levels in the city's air were 2.2 times higher than acceptable levels early on Monday, according to state pollution monitoring service Mosekomonitoring.

Weather forecasters say shifting winds are due to help clear the air in the middle of the week.

The heatwave is expected to continue for the next few days and subside by early next week.

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