Hundreds evacuated, 13 treated for minor injuries after Via train catches fire

Hundreds of Via Rail passengers were evacuated from a burning locomotive and forced to trudge about two kilometres through the bush near Ottawa on Sunday, a journey that saw more than a dozen treated for minor injuries.

OTTAWA — Hundreds of Via Rail passengers were evacuated from a burning locomotive and forced to trudge about two kilometres through the bush near Ottawa on Sunday, a journey that saw more than a dozen treated for minor injuries.

The engine of the Toronto-to-Ottawa train caught fire near Richmond, Ont., at about 8 p.m. ET., and more than 300 passengers had to walk along the tracks to the nearest road to board buses to finish their journey.

At least 13 required treatment for bug bites, allergic reactions and some minor bumps and bruises.

Carleton University journalism student Lauren Vogel was returning from Toronto when the lights in her car suddenly went out and the air conditioning stopped working.

A Via employee came through the car and began shouting at everyone to get to the back of the train, said Vogel.

As smoke filled the car and the doors wouldn’t open, Vogel said people began to panic.

“I just thought, I’ve just got to keep cool and get off this train,” she said.

Eventually the car doors were opened, said Vogel, who twisted her ankle when she jumped to the ground.

The whole ordeal probably took about 10 minutes, but it felt more like an hour, she said.

Ottawa police Const. Alain Boucher said it “didn’t appear to be a very big incident, although there were many people.”

He added the “operation went well.”

The two engineers were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation and taken to hospital to be assessed, said Jean-Pierre Trottier of the Ottawa Paramedic Service.

Some of the passengers were treated for anxiety, but most were just “slightly annoyed” by the whole experience, Trottier added.

The train had left Toronto at 3:35 p.m. ET and was scheduled to arrive in Ottawa just after 8 p.m. ET.

Just Posted

More than 100 people participate in the Light the Night Walk in Red Deer

Red Deer’s Michael Wark was 27 when he was diagnosed with cancer.… Continue reading

‘Big bang’ precedes Red Deer house fire, says neighbour

A Red Deer home was heavily damaged by a fire early Friday… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Grilling meat at Shelter Ribfest in Red Deer

The first-ever Shelter Ribfest is on this weekend at Gary W. Harris… Continue reading

Red Deer man arrested, charged for drug-related offences

A Red Deer man is facing a number of charges, including possession… Continue reading

Respect in hockey rinks is often missing

The men and women in stripes have long been scrutinized on the… Continue reading

Fashion Fridays: 10 effortlessly stylish items for fall

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Your community calendar

Wednesday Central Alberta Historical Society annual general meeting is 6 p.m. at… Continue reading

Trump front and centre as talk of trade, jobs emerges on campaign trail

OTTAWA — A familiar U.S. face finally showed up front and centre… Continue reading

RDC Kings and Queens cross country dominate on home turf

There was a lot of pride floating around amongst the host team… Continue reading

Hunting Hills Lightning cruise past Foothills Falcons in high school football action

The Hunting Hills Lightning showed their Football Alberta ranking was no fluke… Continue reading

Two students dead, several seriously injured in Vancouver Island bus rollover

Two University of Victoria students died and several people were injured after… Continue reading

‘It’s time:’ Paralyzed Bronco returning to Humboldt for first time since crash

For the first time in 526 days, former Broncos hockey player Ryan… Continue reading

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $27 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — There was no winning ticket for the $27 million jackpot… Continue reading

White House says bin Laden son killed in US operation

WASHINGTON — The White House announced Saturday that Hamza bin Laden ,… Continue reading

Most Read