Montreal transformer explosion injures two after outage left 40,000 without power

June 13, 2018 0 By news club

Two men were sent to hospital with burns after an electrical transformer exploded Wednesday morning in a building on de Bleury Street.

According to Montreal police, the men, who are between the ages of 20 and 30, are in critical condition. Both have burns to their upper bodies.

Hydro-Québec confirmed that the two men were not employees of the public utility.

The incident happened around the same time as a major power outage struck downtown Montreal and the South Shore. Montreal police say the two incidents are related, but offered no further details.

Hydro-Québec said the explosion was not the cause of the outage, and that the two men who were injured were downtown workers whose power went out.

“They decided to see the problem for themselves,” said Hydro-Québec spokesperson Serge Tsoto.

He could not say what exactly triggered the explosion.

Close to 40,000 customers were without power at one point early Wednesday afternoon.

Hydro-Québec blamed the outage on a transmission network failure. Power was restored to most clients by 3 p.m., Tsoto said.

Concordia grad goes dark

The power outage affected Place-des-Arts, leaving a Concordia University convocation in the dark. 

About 30 minutes into the ceremony, as graduates were striding across the stage, the lights went out. But the ceremony continued, after a few adjustments. 

“They had emergency lights on in the room, but not on the stage,” said Catherine Trudeau, who participated in the convocation.

“The whole ceremony went on without power.”

She said the master of ceremonies used a megaphone instead of a microphone. 

“I think it’s something memorable. I think we’re going to laugh at, at some point. We were disappointed but life happens,” Trudeau said.

Concordia tweeted that the afternoon convocation ceremony is expected to run as scheduled.

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