“Three people are dead and 30 people are unaccounted for after an overnight fire broke out at a seniors’ residence in L’Isle-Verte, Quebec,” the CBC reports.
According to the Montreal Gazette, “the massive fire in the 52-unit complex broke out around 12:30 a.m. ET” on Thursday. “Initial reports said 20 residents had been transported to safety, but it was unclear just how many residents were missing in the inferno.”
Quebec Provincial Police Sgt. Audrey-Annie Bilodeau told reporters that “we hope for the best. … We hope that the number is going to go down.”
The CBC adds that “extreme cold weather is complicating the work of emergency crews, officials said, as the temperature was about –19 C.”
That’s -2 degrees Fahrenheit.
L’Isle-Verte is about 280 miles northeast of Montreal.
We’ll keep an eye on the news and update. The CBC is live blogging here.
Update at 10:45 a.m. ET. “Mass-Casualty Mode”:
News reports from Canada do not yet offer many new details about what happened or just how many victims there are. But the Toronto Star posts this ominous sounding news:
” ‘We are in mass casualty management mode, a little bit like we saw in Lac-Mégantic,’ police spokeswoman Sgt. Ann Mathieu. That meant a coroner and health team were on the scene.”
Mathieu was referring to the train disaster in another Quebec town last July that left 47 people dead.