Aug. 25 (UPI) -- More than 100 people have died from heatstroke in August in Tokyo as the city experienced record-high temperatures.
A total of 170 people have reportedly died this month due to heat stress in Tokyo alone, the city's medical inspector office said, according to the Tokyo Shimbun on Tuesday. The number is the highest since 2007, amid record temperatures not registered since 1898.
Elderly residents have been the most affected since an intense heat wave began in mid-August. According to official statistics, about 90% of those who have died due to heat-related causes were in their 60s or older. Among the 170 people who have died, 142 did not have access to air-conditioning, the report says.
The heat wave may have been unexpected after what officials described as a "long rainy season" in July. Precipitation had a cooling effect but in August several cities in Japan experienced temperatures around 104 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Japan's meteorological agency.
Japanese officials say they are expecting more deaths. The weather agency has said temperatures are expected to continue to exceed 88 degrees this week and has advised the public to take appropriate measures.
Officials have also warned the public about a rise in body temperature in the event of a heat-related ailment and cautioned the public against confusing their symptoms for COVID-19.
Cases of the novel coronavirus continue to climb in Japan. The country has more than 64,000 confirmed cases and 1,224 deaths, according to NHK and Jiji Press.
Japan confirmed more than 700 new patients on Tuesday, with many concentrated in Tokyo and Osaka.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has recommended residents reconsider travel plans or has advised against dining outside their homes.
In July, the central government had encouraged the public to travel during the holidays to boost the economy.