A person perished Saturday morning in his burning vehicle following a terrible collision involving three vehicles in Val-d'Or, in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.

A second man succumbed to his injuries in hospital, according to the Surete du Quebec (SQ).

The accident occurred at around 5 a.m. on the Thompson Bridge which spans the river of the same name.

For some as yet undetermined reason, the victim's van swerved out of its lane before coming face to face with a tractor-trailer.

A third vehicle was unable to brake in time and struck the van from behind.

Upon impact, the van caught fire, and the driver was stuck in the vehicle, said SQ spokesperson Sergeant Beatrice Dorsainville, in a telephone interview four hours after the tragedy.

She added that the driver of the tractor-trailer was in critical condition in a hospital centre at the time.

The man in his 50s later died in the hospital, according to the SQ.

The person who was behind the wheel of the van could not be identified immediately because of the state in which his body was in following the fire, said SQ Sergeant Jean Raphaël Drolet.

The driver of the third vehicle involved was not injured.

Route 117 is completely closed in both directions on the Thompson Bridge for an indefinite period to allow SQ police officers to do their job at the scene of the accident.

-- this report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2020.