‘Spike in deaths’ on hottest day on record

The number of deaths spiked on the hottest day of the summer, provisional official data shows.

There were 1,473 deaths on July 25 registered in England and Wales, rising from about 1,100-1,200 deaths per day around the same time, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

July 25 saw temperatures reach 38.7C in Cambridge, breaking the record for the highest temperature ever recorded in the UK.

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Hottest July day on record
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Hottest July day on record
People enjoying the sun shine on Bournemouth beach as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
EDITORIAL USE ONLY Customers fill up water bottles at the free Rehydration Station at Boots store in Covent Garden, London.
People waiting at Grantham station as cancellations from Grantham into London continue due to the hot weather.
EDITORIAL USE ONLY Customers fill up water bottles at the free Rehydration Station at Boots store in Covent Garden, London.
A Southeastern train passes through heat haze in Ashford, Kent as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
People play a game of volleyball in a pop up court in Canary Wharf, London, after 200 tonnes of sand was brought in to fill a space between the tall financial buildings.
A barbary macaque enjoys a frozen fruit and nut treat at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire, as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius at Heathrow being recorded.
Amur tiger Minerva cools off in her pool at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire, as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius at Heathrow being recorded. The UK's all-time record of 38.5 degrees may be broken later this afternoon.
People enjoying the sun shine on Bournemouth beach as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
People enjoying the sun shine on Bournemouth beach as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
People enjoying the sun shine on Bournemouth beach as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
People play in the water at Hathersage Outdoor Swimming Pool in Derbyshire, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People play in the water at Hathersage Outdoor Swimming Pool in Derbyshire, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People play in the water at Hathersage Outdoor Swimming Pool in Derbyshire, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People play in the water at Hathersage Outdoor Swimming Pool in Derbyshire, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
Workmen enjoy ice creams in Manchester as the UK has surpassed the hottest July day on record, with 36.9 degrees celsius being recorded at Heathrow. The all-time UK record of 38.5C (101.3F) recorded in Faversham, Kent, in August 2003, could be broken on Thursday, the Met Office said.
RETRANSMITTING WITH CORRECTED BYLINE TO JACOB KING. People play in the water at Hathersage Outdoor Swimming Pool in Derbyshire, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People sunbathe in Hyde Park, London, after temperatures climbed above 30C in some parts of the UK after a tropical night, as the country braces for record-breaking heat.
A man shades his head with a flannel in Hyde Park, London, after temperatures climbed above 30C in some parts of the UK after a tropical night, as the country braces for record-breaking heat.
People boating on the Serpentine in Hyde Park, London, after temperatures climbed above 30C in some parts of the UK after a tropical night, as the country braces for record-breaking heat.
A young woman tries to keep cool in Hyde Park, London, after temperatures climbed above 30C in some parts of the UK after a tropical night, as the country braces for record-breaking heat.
People punt along the River Cam in Cambridge, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
Hamza and Haris splash in the water feature beside the National Football Museum in central Manchester, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People splash in the fountains in Piccadilly Gardens in central Manchester, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People enjoy the hot weather on Brighton Beach as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People enjoy the hot weather on Brighton Beach as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
A couple row up the Thames approaching the bridge at Hose Fair, near Kingston-upon-Thames. The UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People enjoy the hot weather in Hyde Park, London, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
People enjoy the hot weather in Hyde Park, London, as the UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
The sun rises over Burton Dassett Hills in Southam, Warwickshire. The UK could encounter the hottest July day on record later this afternoon.
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The ONS was looking at whether "killer heatwave" news headlines are backed up by the data in a release called 'Do summer heatwaves lead to an increase in deaths?'

The stats body cautioned that the May to August 2019 data is "highly provisional" due to the amount of time it can take for deaths to be registered, meaning the recorded number of deaths per day is likely to increase as more deaths are registered.

HEALTH HeatwaveWhile comparisons with previous years cannot yet be made using the recent summer's data, the statisticians compared the number of deaths per day in summer 2018 with the five-year average (2013-18).

The ONS said: "The comparatively high number of deaths occur mainly on days that are defined as heatwaves by Public Health England (PHE) in their deaths relating to heatwaves report."

These spikes tended to be followed by periods of lower-than-average deaths, the ONS said.

The body went on: "This means that at a daily level, extreme heat seems to have an impact on the number of deaths, but across the summer period as a whole the number of deaths is similar to previous years.

"This could be because the most vulnerable people, for example, those with pre-existing respiratory or cerebrovascular diseases are more susceptible to death during heatwaves."

Even when taking into account the heatwaves, the effects of winter on mortality are consistently greater than summer, it added.

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