Search turns to recovery operation for missing B.C. boater presumed dead

The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Police and other rescue agencies say they’re still looking for a 37-year-old boater who went missing near Mission, B.C., but local rescue crews say “it’s unlikely he is still alive.”

RCMP say police responded to Nicomen Slough, about 14 kilometres northeast of Mission, on Friday evening after receiving reports of a boating accident in which two men were thrown into the water.

They say the boaters were reportedly doing donuts in a small aluminum boat, and both got tossed from the craft after hitting their own wake.

Police say the boat’s passenger was able to make it to shore, but the driver could not be located after what police describe as an extensive search of the area.

Search and rescue crews from Mission, Central Fraser Valley and South Fraser are resuming search efforts today, but they believe “it is unlikely that the driver is still alive.”

Police say the missing boater, who is from Dewdney, B.C., wasn’t wearing a life-jacket at the time and alcohol may also have played a role in the incident.

Mission RCMP Cpl. Harrison Mohr says police are extending their condolences to the missing boater’s families and friends.

“This is a tragic end to what was supposed to be an enjoyable evening on the water. Our thoughts are with the man’s family and friends, and with the passenger that had been with him on the boat,” he said in a written statement.

Mohr is warning people to wear a life-jacket when getting on the water amid the peak boating season.

“It’s like a seatbelt in a car – it only works if you wear it,” said Mohr.

SEE ALSO: RCMSAR urges boating safety after 131 missions this year

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 15, 2024.

The Canadian Press

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