Domestic News

Quebec imposes mandatory training for guides after snowmobile accident

TORONTO (Reuters) - Quebec’s tourism ministry said on Thursday it will impose mandatory training for guides and tourists, as well as require all nature and adventure tourism companies in the province to hold accreditation, after one guide died and five French tourists went missing while snowmobiling.

The province’s tourism minister, Caroline Proulx, told reporters the province had already been working on such a plan but had to fast-track following the guide’s death and disappearance of the five tourists Tuesday night.

The guide and a group of eight French snowmobilers plunged through the ice into the water near Québec’s Lac-Saint-Jean where they were hiking on a non-marked trail.

The Lac-Saint-Jean region is popular with tourists during the winter. According to the Montreal Gazette, 20 people were killed in snowmobile accidents between 2010 and 2019 while visiting Quebec, including six tourists from France.

Police are still looking for the five missing tourists and have added additional divers, rescuers and equipment to help with the search, Sgt. Audrey-Anne Bilodeau of Surete du Quebec told Reuters.

Three of the survivors rescued Wednesday have left the region for the Montreal airport, local media reported.

Reporting by Denise Paglinawan; Editing by David Gregorio