Still no sign of four missing fishermen from Hay River on Great Slave Lake

Searchers found a capsized fishing boat on Great Slave Lake in the area of the pin (map courtesy of Google Maps)

RCMP say there is still no sign of four fishermen from Hay River who are reported missing on Great Slave Lake.

According to a news release, issued by the Mounties late Tuesday morning, Hay River RCMP and the military’s Joint Rescue Command Centre (JRCC), based at Canadian Forces Base Trenton in eastern Ontario, are continuing the search and rescue operation for the four overdue fishermen.

“On Tuesday, October 1st, the search efforts will focus on the northern shores of Great Slave Lake, from Yellowknife to Gros Cap, and from Hardisty Island toward the Mackenzie River,” the release states. “Aircraft from 440 (Air Transport) Squadron (based in Yellowknife), and the Civilian Air Search and Rescue Association (CASARA) have been deployed. JRCC has also deployed a Hercules aircraft and a Griffon helicopter to Great Slave Lake to assist with the search effort.”

Vessels from the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary from Hay River and Yellowknife as well as the Canadian Coast Guard are engaged in grid searches between Hay River and Sulphur Point, east of Hay River, police state.

Hay River RCMP say they initially received a report Monday of overdue fishermen believed to be travelling by boat on Great Slave Lake.

The group of four men left the commercial dock in Hay River early on Sunday to travel to Sulphur Point, on the south shore of Great Slave Lake, to check fishing nets, police said.

On Monday RCMP said aircraft from 440 Squadron searched the south shoreline from Hay River to Pine Point, then extended the search area north on Great Slave Lake.

Transport Canada aircraft, utilizing radar and infrared equipment searched the lake and the area between Hay River and Yellowknife.

It has not been made clear by police if the boat was equipped with a two-way radio, satellite phone or GPS tracking device.

“We are continuing to coordinate the search efforts with the possibility of bringing additional aircraft and vessels” states RCMP Sergeant Brandon Humbke, from the Hay River Detachment.  “If there is any information on the missing persons’ location(s), we ask you to contact the Hay River detachment” requests Humbke.

The weather conditions on the lake improved overnight, however, RCMP is urging community volunteers to not put themselves at risk, despite their good intentions to assist.

Updates will be provided as information becomes available, police said.

The names of the missing fishermen have not been released.

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.