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Virus reported aboard Canadian passenger train

One elderly woman dead, three others hospitalized

By Douglas J. Hagmann

30 December 2012: We are following an incident aboard a Via Rail Canada passenger train traveling from Vancouver, BC to Toronto, Ontario Canada involving the death of one elderly passenger and the reported illness of at least three others. The train, containing 200 passengers and a crew of 13, departed Vancouver on December 25, 2012 and was scheduled to arrive in Toronto at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, December 29.


At approximately 5:00 a.m. Saturday, the train made an unscheduled stop at a station located near Parry Sound, Ontario after it was reported that four passengers occupying the same area of the train were suffering from severe flu-like symptoms. Upon arrival at the station, it was found that an 86 year-old female had died. Three other passengers were taken from the train to a nearby hospital. The two rooms occupied by the affected passengers were quarantined and will be sterilized.

An inquiry made by this writer with the Ontario Provincial Police early this morning confirmed the death of one person and the hospitalization of three others, although the current condition of those hospitalized could not be verified. According to the Ontario Provincial Police, only passengers in one area of the train were affected, although health officials will be monitoring reports of illness among any of the other passengers.

The passenger train arrived in Toronto six-an-a-half hours later than scheduled yesterday. An autopsy is scheduled to be conducted on the deceased woman in Toronto today. The type of virus has yet to be identified. We will continue to follow this incident and report updates as warranted.

Editor’s note: This agency would like to acknowledge the contribution of Ontario resident Ivan W. to this story.