Emergency Closure Of Unsafe Bridge Strands Thousands Of People In Isolated Area Of Quebec (Photos)
Campers had little warning ahead of a bridge closure.
What was supposed to be a quiet family vacation for thousands of campers in Ferme-Neuve, Quebec has turned into a bad episode of Lost. 3,000 campers are stranded in a remote site in the small municipality after their only way out was closed for safety reasons.
According to TVA Nouvelles, Rabaska campground and the surrounding areas have been shut off because the Quebec Ministry of Transport (MTQ), after a scheduled routine visit, closed the only bridge with little warning. The structure of the bridge was deemed a safety hazard after it sustained heavy damage this winter.
The bridge is currently being evaluated by a second team and officials hope to be able to re-open the bridge as soon as possible. More vacationers are expected to arrive on Sunday.
Experts have no idea when the bridge will be re-opened and apparently, the only two detour options are unpassable, according to the Journal de Montreal.
One possible route would include a 150km detour through dense forest and dangerous roads, conditions that are unreasonable for heavily burdened RVs and pickup trucks. The campsite allows visitors to bring their boats along with many other aquatic vehicles, so it's not practical for people to drive along the proposed route.
Translation: BASKATONG ROAD IN FERME-NEUVE COMPLETE CLOSURE OF THE STRUCTURE (IRON BRIDGE) LOCATED ABOVE LAKE PISCATOSIN DISCHARGE.
Ferme-Neuve is a small municipality in the isolated woods of the Upper Laurentians. A couple of hours away from downtown Montreal, the town is a hub for campers and chalet-goers thanks to its gorgeous landscapes.
Options are under consideration, but for now, many of the stranded campers are taking this inconvenience in stride. Some volunteers are even ferrying supplies across the expanse to assist the stranded campers.
The photos below were posted to Facebook by local company Code Rouge Mont-Laurier.
The bridge was suddenly closed Wednesday evening after a routine inspection. Campers were only given one hour's notice. There's no time frame yet for when the bridge will be re-opened.
The owner of the campsite, Martin Gamache, says that there are 1,000 campers and even more in the surrounding territory. Some 3,000 people are affected by this bridge closure.
For now, everything seems to be ok! The weather is cooperating and really, do people need an excuse to extend their vacation?
Officials are currently evaluating the state of the bridge and will let the stranded campers know the situation as soon as possible.
If you happen to be stranded on this campsite and are reading this article, send us an update @MTLBlog on Insta!