A search is continuing for a 56-year-old man who last seen kayaking at Becher Bay on Monday.
The Victoria man was seen launching his red kayak from Becher Bay Marina in East Sooke at 12 p.m. on June 18. A witness also saw the man kayaking in the bay. He was reported missing by his father who contacted Saanich police when his son did not return from kayaking.
The next day, Sooke RCMP found the man’s vehicle at Becher Bay. The kayak was found at Hoskyn Point at around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday but the man remains unaccounted for.
On Tuesday night, six vessels were searching the waters off East Sooke. The RCMP are carrying out a ground search in the area, but the search from the air was called off on Tuesday evening due to fog.
By Wednesday morning, Sooke RCMP, Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue and Juan de Fuca Search and Rescue (SAR) were back searching the Strait of Juan de Fuca, including various areas. Crews are searching an area approximately 500 square nautical miles (1,717 square kilometres) off the coast of Vancouver Island from Sooke to Hein Bank, and Victoria to Port Angeles.
Juan de Fuca SAR had their command center set up at the Cheanuh Marina where band members of the Sc’ianew First Nation helped guide SAR search the vicinity shoreline of Fraser Island.
Wong’s family was also present Tuesday assisting with the search efforts.
“We have band members helping our team and advising them and taking them in to search there today but we also have members of Metchosin search and rescue starting at Becher Bay Marina and they are working their way east. So we have the whole bay right now,” said SAR Manager Heidi Garner.
The Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Victoria is no longer involved in the search as it has been handed over to the RCMP.
Garner says the magnitude of the search going forward will be determined by the RCMP, who is leading the investigation.
Correction: An earlier version of this story said the missing man’s name was Michael Wong, which was incorrect. The story has been corrected to not include a name. CHEK News apologizes for the error.