(Sherbrooke) An enormous pileup, involving more than forty vehicles, occurred on Highway 10, near exit 121 in Magog, around 3:40 pm Tuesday. The vast majority of people got away without the slightest scratch, but some were injured and transported to the hospital.
About forty vehicles were involved in a huge pileup on Highway 10, near exit 121 in Magog, around 3:40 pm Tuesday.
According to information obtained from the emergency services, none of the wounded were in a serious condition. A heart man, however, complained of chest pains and had difficulty breathing, which led the speakers to prioritize his case. Two pregnant women were also among the injured and received special attention.
“In the past, there have been pile-ups with people killed in the region. Fortunately, it was not the scenario that happened this time, even though many vehicles came up against them, “notes SQ’s relations officer Aurélie Guindon.
In light of the situation, the authorities announced the complete closure of Highway 10 in both directions for an indefinite period in the area where the cars collided.
On Tuesday evening, the Sûreté du Québec was not in a position to explain in detail the causes of the pile-up. It is clear, however, that the road conditions were dreadful. People were driving at speeds well below the maximum allowed on Highway 10 when the pile-up occurred. Drivers had even turned on their emergency lights before losing control.
Proof that the road conditions could hardly be worse, another smaller pileup occurred some fifteen kilometers to the west on Highway 10. One of the SQ’s autopatrols was struck at this location.
Residing in the Magog area, Claudia Thomassin admitted without difficulty that she experienced the worst of her life when she realized that the monster pile-up, at kilometer 120 of Highway 10, was inevitable.
“I was in the midst of a large group of cars. There was a total blizzard and I saw nothing or almost. A wall of cars was in front of me. We had to go at 70 or 80 kilometers an hour. By putting the brakes on, the car did not slow down at all. The roadway was very icy, “says Thomassin.
Once her car was immobilized, she remained inside for a while while others quickly ran to a bank near the highway. “I got out of my car of pain and misery,” she said.
Claudia Thomassin had decided to leave work earlier than usual Tuesday, precisely to avoid this type of situation. “My vehicle was badly damaged, but I consider myself lucky not to have been seriously injured. It is surprising that almost all of them are well. ”
Chief of operations at the Magog fire department, Martin Pomerleau notes that a dozen Magog firefighters lent a hand to the Sûreté du Québec, the Memphrémagog police station and the ambulance attendants at the scene of the accident.
“Although all the vehicles were glued to each other, we did not have to use the rescue forceps. In addition, we checked for significant gas leaks and found only a very small one, “explains Pomerleau.
The CIUSSS of Estrie-CHUS, which expected a massive arrival of patients, triggered an orange code at the CHUS (Hôtel-Dieu and Fleurimont), as well as at the hospitals of Magog and Coaticook.
This code, which alters the organization of work by bringing together many staff members in the same place, has been in force for three hours. This measure is put in place for exceptional situations, as was the case during the deadly explosion at Neptune Technologies in 2012.
“It was found that there was no mass arrival as expected. We have ensured that no staff member leaves without the manager’s authorization, “says Annie-Andrée Émond, spokesperson for the CHUSSS de l’Estrie-CHUS.
The pounding of kilometer 120 resulted in four ambulance transports to the hospitals of Sherbrooke. The emergencies were busy all day Tuesday and, in the evening, we were still waiting several centimeters of snow.
“Certainly our services are going to be slow. People are being asked to be indulgent. There are some staff members who will not be able to show up (due to the weather). Some will have made extra shifts, “notes Émond.
For these reasons, the CIUSSS of Estrie-CHUS may move non-urgent appointments. In these cases, the population is invited not to appear; Appointments will be rescheduled and patients will be contacted promptly, the organization assures. With Isabelle Pion