Ste. Therese De Blainville, QB Airliner Crashes, Nov 1963
Right fell heavily.
Police organized their forces before dawn to keep spectators away.
Highway road blocks were set up five miles each way from the crash area. Motorists who could not show identification that would permit them passing the blocks were directed to by-passing routes.
The airliner dived into the field -- already a mass of mire from Friday's heavy rain -- about halfway between Highway 11 and an expressway and 800 feet from a row of houses that line the highway.
One of the first tasks was to get a solid roadway to the crash scene through the deep mud. During the night bulldozers, tractors and trucks loaded with gravel were brought in.
The crater made by the plane was about 30 yards square and at least six feet deep.
Trees near the crater that were not directly hit bore few scars. They leaned outward from the crater, as if bent by the explosion, but eyewitnesses could not agree whether the aircraft exploded in the air or on impact.
One of them described the explosion as "like an atomic bomb." A huge red ball of fire burst into the air.
MRS. AIME BERTHIAUME, whose house is along Highway 11 near the crash scene, said she was in her kitchen "when I heard a terrible explosion and saw a high ball of fire in the air."
"The plane crashed just about right away after that," she said.
But her son ALLAN, 21, said he heard the "swooshing" sound of the jet before "it hit the ground and exploded, sending a huge ball of fire into the air."
President GORDON R. McGREGOR of TCA said it would be difficult to determine the cause of the crash.
Investigators normally can piece together what happened by picking up a limited amount of wreckage, he said, but "I am not cheerful about the possibilities of getting information from these parts because the breakup is so severe."
Another TCA official said there was no question of sabotage in the disaster nor was there any confirmation of an explosion before the ill-fated plane hit the ground.
At least 300 soldiers were stationed around the still smouldering wreckage to ensure that everything was left intact.
This followed removal of some wreckage by the curious who tied up traffic along three-lane Highway 11 for at least five miles in either direction.
A search of houses in the area brought out some pieces of wreckage taken as souvenirs.