Bombardier R&D facility explosion - news report screencap

Bombardier has closed its research and development complex in Valcourt, Quebec following an overnight explosion late last week. Two employees were left with severe burns after the incident, including a security guard. Both were taken to a local hospital for treatment and remain in medically induced comas. According to reports, local police heard the explosion and saw a ball of fire shoot into the sky before seeing the two men run from the building. Police say the damage appears to have emanated from a research lab, but firefighters were able to quickly get the blaze under control. Law enforcement believes the fire was accidental, but a full-fledged investigation is currently underway.

The complex is under construction as part of expansion efforts, and some have speculated the blast could have been caused by the work. There's no indication as to when the facility will reopen for business. In the interim, Bombardier has established a phone hotline to give employees and their family members information and support.

Bombardier Recreational Products spun off from Bombardier in 2003. It manufactures Ski-Doo snowmobile and jet ski recreational products, as well as Evinrude outboard motors and some ATVs. For more, watch the CBC News story about the blast in the video below.