Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Lac-Mégantic death toll climbs to 37

Quebec provincial police say they have recovered the bodies of two additional victims in Lac-Mégantic, bringing the total found to 37.

Sûreté du Québec Insp. Michel Forget said Monday that emergency crews have been searching the disaster site every day from early in the morning to sunset, working 15 minute shifts because of the extreme heat.

A combination of hot weather and heat radiating from the blast zone brought the temperature to 52 C today in certain areas where crews were digging, said Forget.

He said one emergency worker received medical treatment for a minor heat-related illness.

"The conditions were extremely difficult, but we still carried out the work," said Forget.

At a press conference, Forget said crews are searching for approximately 50 people missing and presumed dead, leaving about 13 bodies still not found.

He said they have completed their search of the site of the Musi-Café — a popular bar where many of the victims are thought to have been the night of the blast.

The Quebec coroner's office said it has confirmed the identity of another two victims and are currently notifying the families. The coroner's office spokesperson, Geneviève Guilbault, said it is impossible to know how long it will be before the bodies of the victims can be released to their families, because of the ongoing investigation.

The coroner's office says it has identified 11 victims so far.

Tuesday 16 July 2013



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