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Canada’s train blast: Searchers comb rubble

Investigators have begun gaining access to parts of a Quebec town levelled when a runaway crude oil train exploded on Saturday, police have said.

The death toll in Lac-Megantic has risen to 13, with about 37 more still missing, police have said.

Meanwhile, authorities warned it could be days before search teams could access the entire disaster zone.

At least 30 buildings were destroyed by the fireball, including a grocery store and the public library.

The crash could be Canada’s worst rail disaster in 50 years, reports the BBC’s Paul Adams.

The devastation was so great Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said the town looked like “a warzone” as he toured the area on Sunday.

Hazardous conditions, including dozens of tanker wagons strewn about the site, continue to hamper search efforts.

On Monday afternoon, police spokesman Benoit Richard said at least 12 crime scene investigators were working alongside a major crimes unit and specialised forensics lab personnel.

He said the toll of the dead and missing – previously reported as 40 – had risen as more residents called authorities with reports.

“Hopefully we’ll get through the whole scene in the next couple of days,” he said.

A spokeswoman for Quebec’s coroner’s office, Genevieve Guilbault, pleaded with the families of the missing to provide DNA samples to investigators by bringing in toothbrushes, hairbrushes, combs, razors, hats or other items.

Many of those missing were believed to have been drinking at a popular downtown bar when the explosions occurred.

Read full story on BBC News

Category: World News |

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Last updated October 20, 2016 at 7:03 PM
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