Two workers remain trapped after scaffold collapse at Domtar plant in Eastern Townships

Two people remain trapped in the debris after a multi-storey scaffold collapsed overnight at a paper mill in Quebec’s Eastern Townships.

Company officials and provincial police said they had no new information about the status of the two workers and that rescue operations remain ongoing late Tuesday afternoon.

Sylvain Bricault, the manager of the Domtar mill in Windsor, Que., told reporters that the scaffold spanned the height of the factory and that a portion of it collapsed.

“So we are talking about a significant amount of material,” he said at a press conference.

“Currently, we are not in contact with the workers, we’re doing everything we can to rescue them as quickly as possible,” he said.

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Bricault said the trapped workers are not Domtar employees and work for a contracting company that was doing major work at the factory.

Earlier in the day, Bricault said another worker was injured in the collapse and was transported to hospital, but his life is not in danger.

The incident took place at around 1:35 a.m. Tuesday.

The mill’s emergency team, provincial police, local firefighters and firefighters from Sherbrooke, Que., are participating in the rescue operation, the company said in a statement.

The company said it is co-operating with provincial police and workplace health and safety board investigators.

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The incident took place in the pulping section of the mill and all work has stopped in that part of the facility.

Several other people were in and around the scaffolding when the collapse took place and were able to get out with assistance, Bricault said, adding that they received psychological treatment.

Other workers who were in the area also received psychological treatment, he said, adding that support will be offered to other workers and their families.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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