Body pulled from quarry after search resumes Saturday
Published Saturday, February 2, 2013 1:16PM EST
Last Updated Saturday, February 2, 2013 6:47PM EST
MONTREAL—The body of a man was discovered in the quarry outside of l’Epiphanie on Saturday afternoon, less than two hours after a search resumed for two missing workers.
Nearly 50 people are involved in the rescue efforts after a man and a woman in their 40s disappeared Tuesday after a landslide swept their vehicles into a 100-metre deep gravel pit.
Police in l’Epiphanie confirmed that a body was found just after 12:20 p.m. and was being brought to hospital where the family could identify the remains.
Benoit Richard, a spokesman for the Surete du Quebec, said the investigation would continue until the second body is found.
"We're looking where we found the two trucks," Richard told reporters at the scene. "That's where we expect to find the second victim."
The on-again off-again search has been hampered by heavy rain and strong winds. On Friday, crews were pulled out of the quarry due to concerns that the area was at risk of another landslide.
Richard said they were taking precautions to avoid triggering another landslide but that "there is always a risk when you're working in an area like this."
Benoit Robert survived the landslide Tuesday after rescue workers pulled him out of the caved-in pit via helicopter.
Robert, 47, said moments before the landslide he was warned by a female co-worker in a nearby truck.
Equipment and around 20 rescuers were lowered to the bottom of the quarry on Friday. But technicians later warned the ground was too unstable to continue the operation and the site was evacuated.
Strong winds also prevented rescue crews from conducting their search Thursday.
The SQ and Quebec’s workplace safety board have opened an investigation to determine the cause of the landslide in the quarry and the resulting deaths. They say it is still too early to confirm whether charges could be laid against Maskimo Construction.
—with files from The Canadian Press.