• Kyodo News

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A total of 54,386 people suffering heatstroke have been taken in ambulances to hospitals across the nation since May 31, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said Tuesday.

Of the total, including 2,227 who were rushed to hospitals during the week through Sunday alone, 170 people were confirmed dead shortly after arriving at hospitals, the agency said in a preliminary report on this summer’s scorching heat.

An agency official referred to the latest weekly figure as “unusually high for September” and urged people to take care to prevent heatstroke, especially during school outdoor activities.

According to the report, people diagnosed with mild symptoms made up the largest proportion of those taken to hospitals at 58 percent, while those with moderate symptoms made up 35.2 and those with severe symptoms 3.4 percent. By age bracket, people aged 65 or above accounted for 46.5 percent, the agency said.

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