Potential fatal grizzly bear attack being investigated near Tulita

An RCMP patrol vehicle. (CKLB file photo.)

CKLB News has learned that RCMP in Tulita are investigating a possible fatal grizzly bear attack along the Mackenzie River near that Sahtu community.

Mounties in Tulita were not willing to share any information with CKLB about the investigation referring questions to RCMP media relations in Yellowknife.

What is known is that a canoeing party of four adults and two children, who were on the river early Thursday morning, came upon a distraught woman along the riverbank who told them her husband had been dragged into the bush by a grizzly bear.

RCMP media relations in Yellowknife put out a news release just after 4:00 pm Thursday

“RCMP have an active investigation into an emergency signal received from an area near Tulita, NT. At approximately 7:45 am, August 15, 2019, RCMP received a signal from an emergency communications device. The location, south of Tulita, is only reachable by water or air. RCMP have engaged a helicopter company to assist. GNWT Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources is also assisting as there is a possibility wildlife may have been involved, or in the area. Due to the remote location, RCMP is not requesting public assistance, and will continue to work with partner agencies. As this is an ongoing situation, there are no additional details at this time. An update will be provided when available.”

CKLB has learned that RCMP were contacted using a SPOT emergency tracking device and eventually arrived at the scene by boat.

It is assumed that a search for the man and the bear continues.

It’s unclear where the man is from.

CKLB originally learned about the incident from a member of the Toronto-based family of one of the canoeists, who currently lives in B.C.

Residents across the Northern part of the Northwest Territories have been complaining this summer about what they say is an increase in grizzly bear numbers.

Check this space and/or listen to CKLB Radio for updates.



About the Author

John McFadden
John has been in the broadcast journalism industry since the 1980s. He has been a reporter in Yellowknife since 2012 and joined CKLB in January of 2018. John covers the crime and court beat as well as reporting on other areas including politics, business, entertainment and sports. He won seven national community newspaper awards while he was a journalist with Northern News Services Limited (NNSL). John worked in Ontario before coming North including stints as a TV sportscaster in Peterborough and senior news writer for CBC and CTV in downtown Toronto.