A sharp drop in temperatures has caused two deaths in the western Guatemalan province of Quetzaltenango, first responders said Monday.

Oscar de Jesus Elias was found dead of hypothermia on a street outside the town of Olintepeque, fire rescue said.

The other fatality, identified only as a homeless woman, was discovered in Quetzaltenango city.

Parts of western Guatemala experienced temperatures as low as minus 7 C (19 F), the National Institute of Meteorology said, while many residents woke up Monday to find frost on their homes and vehicles.

Guatemalan weather forecasters predict the country will be affected by at least a dozen cold fronts between now and the end of next March.

The Conred emergency response agency announced that it has established shelters to provide homeless people with a refuge from the cold.

More than 500 people have flocked to the shelters over the last few days, Conred said Monday. EFE