A total of 7,235 heatstroke patients were taken to hospitals across Japan in June, with more than half of the patients aged 65 or older, government data revealed on Saturday.
The figure is the second largest for the month of June since the statistics began in 2010, following 15,969 recorded in June of last year, Xinhua news agency reported citing the data from Japan’s Fire and Disaster Management Agency.
The largest number of patients suffered heatstroke inside houses, totaling 2,567, followed by on-road, at 1,328.
The fire department called on people to take thorough precautions against heatstroke by using air conditioners appropriately and drinking enough water.
The development comes as a blistering heat wave continued to grip much of Japan on Saturday, with heatstroke alerts issued for 38 prefectures across the country.
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) said a high-pressure system covering the archipelago drove up temperatures from early morning, and by noon, Ushiku in Ichihara City, Chiba Prefecture, and Yonago City, Tottori Prefecture, registered 37.2 degrees.
Daytime highs were expected to reach 39 degrees in Kumagaya City, and 38 degrees in such cities as Kyoto, Saitama, Maebashi and Fukushima, said the JMA.
Weather officials warned that the intense heat will continue through August 4.