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Experts, police sifting through rubble of collapsed northern Ontario mall

TORONTO – Police, a firefighter and an engineer will be sifting through the rubble of a collapsed mall in the northern Ontario city of Elliot Lake where two women were crushed to death.

Officials say police and the firefighter will be collecting information to help the coroner and the province in their investigations into the tragedy at the Algo Centre Mall.

They say the Ministry of Labour engineer will try to figure out whether there are other structural problems to determine if the building needs to be torn down.

But a spokesman for the ministry says it isn’t looking at the cause of the roof collapse. He says the province looks at the health and safety of workers, while the city is responsible for enforcing the Ontario building code.

Opposition leaders are also demanding to know what happened and why.

Ontario’s Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak says there was “some kind of screw up” when efforts to rescue any survivors were suspended on Monday after the building was deemed too risky for emergency crews to continue working.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath wants a public inquiry to get to the bottom of what led to the disaster.

Premier Dalton McGuinty has promised that the government will “carefully review” how it responded to the collapse.

Saturday’s cave-in killed Doloris Perizzolo and Lucie Aylwin.

The coroner’s office said Friday that it had spoken with the families of the victims about the findings of its post mortem examinations.

Further forensic testing still needs to be completed but the coroner has released the bodies to the families for funeral services.

“The office of the chief coroner is continuing its investigation into these tragic deaths with the assistance of the OPP,” the office said in a statement. “At this time, we offer our most sincere condolences to the Aylwin and Perizzolo Families.”