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article imageTwo British holidaymakers die in soaring heatwave in Gran Canaria

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By Kev Hedges     May 15, 2012 in Environment
Las Palmas - Two holidaymakers from Britain have died in the Canary Islands after temperatures there have reached in excess of 40c (105F).
Both victims died while hiking on the island of Gran Canaria, which is home to the popular resorts of San Agustín, Playa del Inglés, Sonnenland, Maspalomas and Las Palmas. Both victims were pensioners and they were not known to each other. The Foreign Office has confirmed that two British citizens died on Sunday (May 13) and the Commonwealth office are providing consular support to both families.
In local media it was reported one of the deaths was a female pensioner, who suffered a heart attack while trekking in the island's warmer south side. She was named by consular officials as 78-year-old Wendy Richardson. An air ambulance had been scrambled but paramedics were unable to save her, reports the Daily Mail.
Six other pensioners on the guided hiking tour also suffered from heat-related health problems. On Monday the tourist board based in Gran Canaria said the hike should never have gone ahead in the first place. The island of Gran Canaria is well known for its stunning beaches and night life in its resorts but it also well known for spectacular mountains scenery and reserves, reports the BBC.
Meanwhile, the male pensioner fell into a ravine during a hike with his wife at the spectacular area of Barranco de Azuaje in the island's north. Hot air from the African continent has sent temperatures soaring in some parts of the islands to around 41C (106F). Weather warnings of a heatwave have been in place since last Thursday on the islands.
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