Our hearts go out to all of the workers and their loved ones affected by the devastating explosion at Babine Forest Products east of Burns Lake Saturday.
We can’t begin to imagine the heartache many must be going through after one person has been confirmed dead, and there are still another two who remain unaccounted for.
Many of the other 30 or so workers who were on shift were also injured in the fire, some of whom had to be airlifted to hospitals in Edmonton and Vancouver, and others who have been taken to hospitals in Prince George, Smithers, and Vanderhoof.
With a population of just over 2,700 people, the whole community of Burns Lake is impacted by this event — not only has the mill been a big employer in the area, but everybody knows everybody in such a small, closely knit village.
The cause of the explosion is still under investigation, but there are suspicions that it could have been caused by a gas leak, as some workers have reported noticing a strong gas smell.
We hope that the investigation will reveal exactly went wrong, why, and why it couldn’t have been prevented.
We also hope that anyone else who is found at the site will be found alive and safe, that there will be no more fatalities to report.
In the meantime, we send our warmest thoughts to everyone in Burns Lake, as well as to the rescue personnel who have worked tirelessly to bring people to safety and to all of the doctors, nurses, and medical staff at the hospitals who are caring for the injured and trying to ensure speedy recoveries.