QUEBEC — A Quebec workers’ health and safety investigation has found that a firefighter who perished in December 2019 near Quebec City was battling a blaze from a dangerous location.
Martin Tremblay died when a second-storey extension collapsed on top of him due to a construction defect and deterioration caused by the fire in Boischatel, Que.
The investigation found while firefighters responding to the blaze had employed a defensive strategy, a team went inside to try to contain the flames from within.
The health and safety board, known as the CNESST, said that change in tactics led the firefighter to a dangerous area that had not been previously identified.
The board makes several recommendations in a report, including establishing a clear command structure, more training for structures at risk of collapse and better communication and clear definition of a danger zone when a defensive strategy is undertaken to ensure teams don’t venture in the area deemed at risk.
Tremblay, a 43-year-old father of three, worked as a part-time firefighter in Boischatel-L’Ange-Gardien as well as for the Quebec City fire department, and this week he was posthumously awarded a sacrifice medal by the provincial government.
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