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A Huge 60-Car Pileup On A Quebec Highway Led To 20 Injuries On Christmas Day

The multi-vehicle collision could have been due to a heavy truck "jackknifing," according to the SQ.

Contributing Writer
A Huge 60-Car Pileup On A Quebec Highway Led To 20 Injuries On Christmas Day

More than 20 people are injured and one person is in critical condition after a huge 60-car pileup in Yamachiche, Quebec, on Christmas Day, Sûreté du Québec (SQ) spokesperson Catherine Bernard confirmed to MTL Blog.

Emergency services were called to Highway 40 eastbound between kilometres 175 and 176 shortly before 1 p.m. on December 25 due to a multi-vehicle collision, Bernard said.

While the vast majority of people involved did not suffer serious injuries, a man in his 30s was still in critical condition as of Sunday morning.

Regarding the circumstances of the event, Bernard said that a heavy truck "jackknifing" — when the front of a large vehicle skids, causing a fold that resembles a pocketknife — could be the cause of the collision and that "harsh road conditions might have played a role as well."

François Bonnardel, Quebec's minister of transport, took to Twitter to provide updates on the accident. At 3:49 p.m., he tweeted that in addition to the cars involved in the pileup, around 100 more were waiting for the highway to reopen. At 5:59, he tweeted that snow removal operations were "starting shortly."

The Municipality of Yamachiche, working with the Yamachiche fire department, sent a bus to help evacuate people who were stuck on the scene. Accommodations were set up in a local church basement where volunteers served food and drinks, as well as gave "some comfort to these people who did not expect to spend part of Christmas with us," a post from the municipality's Facebook page says.

Highway 40 eastbound was closed at kilometre 174 until 6:30 p.m. yesterday, but has since been reopened to traffic.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

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