Crews Work to Recover Bodies from Quebec Senior Residence Fireground - News - @ JEMS.com


Crews Work to Recover Bodies from Quebec Senior Residence Fireground

Weather conditions temporarily suspended searches among the rubble

 

 
 
 

| Monday, January 27, 2014


VIDEOS

Multimedia Thumb

Tragic Quebec Senior Housing Fire

At least three dead and 30 unaccounted for.
more >





L'ISLE-VERTE, Quebec (AP) — The owner of a Quebec seniors' residence that burned to the ground offered his condolences Sunday to the families of the 32 people feared dead as search crews had trouble recovering any more bodies in the ice-covered rubble due to the frigid temperatures and swirling snow. Officials have so far have recovered 10 bodies from the massive fire.

JEMS: Death Toll Rises in Quebec Senior Housing Fire

The Sunday afternoon Mass gave residents of the Quebec town of L'Isle-Verte a chance to gather together to share their grief. Roch Bernier, the owner of the Residence du Havre, received a standing ovation from the more than 1,000 people in attendance as he stood up to speak at the Mass.

"What you're living inside, we are living it inside as well," he told the gathering. "We will try to find the strength to get through this."

Bernier later spoke to reporters, but declined to take questions.

The cause of Thursday's blaze remains under investigation. There were media reports that the fire began in the room of a resident who was smoking a cigarette, but police said that was just one possibility among many.

Quebec police said poor visibility, blowing snow and frigid conditions forced authorities to temporarily suspend searches early Sunday — the fourth day of the excruciating search. Police later resumed the search, a day after the remains of only two more people were pulled from the rubble.

On Saturday, search teams brought in equipment normally used to de-ice ships that pushes out very hot air to melt down ice that police said was 60 centimeters (2 feet) thick in certain places.

Quebec Premier Pauline Marois cut short a trip to Europe to visit L'Isle-Verte on Sunday, where she met with the mayor and went to the scene of Thursday's fire.

A total of 10 bodies have been recovered as of Sunday evening. The coroner's office formally identified a third victim on Sunday — Louis-Philippe Roy, 89. About 20 elderly residents survived the fire.

Some were moved to other residences for the elderly in the area, and the Red Cross had raised about C$200,000 ($180,000) to provide clothes, hearing aids, wheelchairs, and other urgent needs.

Many of those who died used wheelchairs or walkers, and some had Alzheimer's. Firefighters responded within minutes of getting the alarm but said they could only reach one-third of the building because the fire was too intense.

The tragedy has devastated the town of 1,500 people 140 miles (225 kilometers) northeast of Quebec City. Quebec Minister of Social Services Veronique Hivon said many of the village's volunteer firefighters had relatives at the retirement home.

The fire came six months after 47 people were killed in the small town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec, when a train carrying oil derailed and exploded.

In 1969, a nursing home fire in the community of Notre-Dame-du-Lac, Quebec, claimed 54 lives.

___

Associated Press Writer Rob Gillies in Toronto contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Mobile Category: 
News


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Tragic Quebec Senior Housing Fire


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, international EMS, Canada, Quebec, fire, seniors, senior citizens

 
What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Philadelphia Fire Department Apologizes for Medic’s Jab at Police

Union head calls photos a slap in the face of officers.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Fire and EMS Crews Blame New Technology for Patient’s Death

Delayed response blamed on recurring dispatch problems.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Suspect Steals, Crashes Maryland Ambulance

One killed, others injured in Prince George’s County crash.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Tennessee Trench Rescue

Worker pulled from Roane County worksite.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Time’s Ebola Firefighters

Doctors, nurses and others saluted for fighting virus.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Car Strikes Manhattan Pedestrians

Seven people hurt when car jumps curb.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >