“There are about five to six cases per year of a road accident involving a tractor, like what happened in Notre-Dame-de-Stanbridge”, notes Sylvain Blanchard, founder of Ferme-Médic, a training center for agricultural accidents which aims to prevent tragedies like the one that claimed the lives of four people, including three young children, last Wednesday.
The toll of the tragedy was indeed increased on Friday when one of the two adults still in critical condition finally died from his injuries. The Sûreté du Québec announced that it had received confirmation of his death early in the evening.
Recall that the fatal hike occurred on Canada Day when ten people were thrown from the shovel of a tractor for an unknown reason. The driver, who faces charges of criminal negligence causing death, is reported to have taken the road to fetch wood in his barn for a family reunion.
Three children under the age of five lost their lives while three others were seriously injured. Four adults were also on board. One died while another was still in critical condition on Friday.
A sad reminder of the risk of accident
Without knowing all the circumstances of this terrible accident, the owner of Ferme-Médic reminds us that we should avoid putting people in the shovel of a tractor, since any impact can eject what is there.
Twenty-five years ago, Blanchard compares, strolling in the box of a pickup truck was commonplace, but today people are aware of the dangers it poses. In his eyes, the drama of Notre-Dame-de-Stanbridge is a sad reminder of the risks of accidents in an agricultural environment and the importance of doing prevention.
Although last Wednesday’s accident occurred on a highway – not farmland – Blanchard said that one-third of agricultural deaths in Quebec involve tractors.
A turning point
Sylvain Blanchard has been a paramedic in Granby for almost 42 years. He is well placed to know that “the scene must have been terrible” for family members and first-timers.
In the first months of his career, he himself had to intervene in an accident involving agricultural machinery in his native region, in Acton Vale, a call that changed him forever.
“A person was being shredded alive in a forage harvester,” he says. When I got out of my vehicle, the person who was stuck in the machine – who did not die – shouted my name and I lost my power for a couple of seconds. From then on, I thought to myself that someday I would do something to make people aware of agricultural mortality and morbidity. ”
The adventure of Ferme-Médic, a training center for agricultural accidents based in Saint-Joachim-de-Shefford, began 25 years later and has allowed the development, over the years, of various rescue and rescue training in agricultural environment.
In addition to preparing first responders to deal with the various situations that may arise in this environment, the paramedic wishes to raise awareness and prevent the dangers found in rural areas and offer training to reduce the risks. accident.
Several farm groups in the MRC de Rouville have taken courses with Ferme-Médic in recent years.
-With the collaboration of Maxime Massé