At least eight deaths in Quebec believed linked to big storm

The number of dead linked to the blizzard that hit Quebec this week has risen to eight, after the bodies of two men were found in Montreal on Thursday in vehicles buried under massive snowbanks left in the wake of the storm.

The body of an 88-year-old man who had been shovelling snow was found in a parked car in LaSalle Thursday morning. Montreal police believe the man may have suffered a seizure or heart attack, which will be determined by an autopsy.

Hours later, around 3 p.m., the body of a 59-year-old man was found in a car on St-Michel Blvd. in Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie. Police dug through the snow and smashed the front window of the car to reach the man, but he was found with no vital signs.

As soon as the storm hit on Tuesday, roadways became dangerous—and sometimes deadly.

A massive pile-up Tuesday afternoon on Highway 20 in St. Zotique involving several 18-wheelers left one truck driver dead. 20,000 L of a toxic substance called sodium hypochlorite also spilled across the roadway.

Also Tuesday afternoon, a man in his fifties died on Highway 55 outside Trois Rivieres when, police say, he lost control of his car and drove into a cement divider in Saint Wenceslas.

During the overnight into Wednesday, three people had to be rescued from a car trapped in the show on Highway 20 in Montmagny, east of Quebec City on the south side of the St. Lawrence River. Two of them later died—one of them, police say, had severe asthma.

The cause of death is not certain, but an autopsy will determine if the pair died from carbon monoxide poisoning. 

Two deaths involving snow plows were reported on Wednesday morning. A woman near Victoriaville was struck by a snow plow removing snow from her St. Valere farm.

A man was struck around the same time by a plow clearing a street in Saint Anselme, outside Quebec City.

Another eight deaths, one in Ontario and the rest in the northeastern United States, are also being blamed on this week's blizzard.