Three fishers die after boat sinks off Quebec coast, three others rescued

MONTREAL — Three people are dead after a fishing boat sank off Quebec's Lower North Shore early Monday morning, provincial police say.

The Canadian Coast Guard said six people were aboard the Silver Condor, out of Blanc Sablon, Que., about 1,300 kilometres northeast of Montreal.

Spokeswoman Emilie Proteau-Beaulieu said in an email that the coast guard received a distress signal from the boat around 2:30 a.m.

Two coast guard vessels and an Armed Forces CH-149 Cormorant helicopter were dispatched to the scene, and all six of the fishers were recovered. Lt.-Cmdr. Len Hickey said three of the people recovered were "unresponsive" when transferred to paramedics.

"The six occupants were recovered jointly by (the coast guard) and (Armed Forces), and were cared for by pre-hospital emergency services once ashore," Proteau-Beaulieu said. She said three other nearby vessels assisted in the search.

She said the cause of the sinking — which took place around 37 kilometres off the coast of La Tabatière, Que. — remains unknown.

Provincial police spokesman Sgt. Hugues Beaulieu said the rescue was completed around 7:30 a.m. and the fishers were transported to hospitals in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

The conditions of the survivors were not immediately disclosed.

Beaulieu said the deaths will be investigated by the Quebec coroner as well as the province's labour board.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 25, 2023.

The Canadian Press