Fire Fighting in Canada

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High winds, snow hamper L’Isle-Verte recovery efforts

Jan. 27, 2014, L'Isle-Verte, Que. - The weather is slowing efforts to recover bodies from the ruins of the Quebec seniors home that was gutted by fire last week.

January 27, 2014
By The Canadian Press

Police say high winds and blowing snow on Sunday made it hard for recovery crews to do their work and withstand the cold.

Ten people have been confirmed dead and 22 are unaccounted for and presumed dead.

A de-icing machine normally used for ships has been brought in to melt the thick layer of ice covering the rubble.

Hundreds gathered in the community of L'Isle-Vert for a special mass yesterday to mourn the loss of the victims.

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Premier Pauline Marois was among those who attended.

A more official memorial service is planned for next weekend.

Some media outlets have quoted staff members of the seniors home as suggesting a lit cigarette ignited the blaze, but police say there are other possibilities.