The B.C. Coroners Service has confirmed that one person has been found deceased in the debris of the Babine Forest Products sawmill, leveled by an explosion and fire on the evening of Jan. 20, 2012.
A specialized team of investigators from the B.C. Coroners Service identification and disaster response unit travelled to the scene on Jan. 22, 2012 to work alongside RCMP investigators in attempting to locate and identify the two individuals missing since the explosion and fire.
Although much of the scene remains unsafe to enter, one individual has been discovered deceased near the periphery of the scene.
The identity of this individual has not yet been confirmed.
Because of the devastating nature of the fire and explosion, further testing will be required to confirm identification.
Two workers from the mill remain unaccounted for since the blast. The B.C. Coroners Service and RCMP have met with families of those two workers and notified them of their findings to date.
The B.C. Coroners Service and RCMP will continue to work with fire investigators, WorkSafe B.C. investigators and structural engineers in an effort to locate and recover the other missing individual, now presumed deceased. However, the devastation on site will make this a lengthy and difficult task.
The BC Coroners Service expresses condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of the missing and injured and to the entire community of Burns Lake.