Search for missing Edmonton man in Wabamun Lake becomes recovery mission
Published Sunday, May 27, 2012 5:12PM MDT
The search for a missing Edmonton man in Wabamun Lake became a recovery mission Sunday.
RCMP have confirmed the 29-year-old man who went missing while tubing in Wabamun Lake Saturday, is from Edmonton.
Emergency crews were called to Wabamun Lake west of Edmonton around 1 p.m. Saturday after the man, who had been tubing, slipped underwater when the tube he was riding flipped in the middle of the lake.
He did not resurface.
Police tell CTV News the man had not been wearing a life-jacket.
"We don't think he was knocked unconscious but the cold water had a huge effect," Sgt. Ian Gillan with Stony Plain RCMP told CTV News Sunday.
"He was flipped into ice cold water where your survivability in water as cold as it is in May in Alberta is very limited. It's measured in minutes, not in hours. You very quickly cramp up to the point where you actually cannot swim and you even have a hard time grabbing onto a rope that would be thrown to you."
Two other men who also fell into the water were rushed to hospital suffering from hypothermia.
Police have said they do not believe drugs or alcohol were factors in the incident.
They're reminding boaters to always wear a life-jacket when participating in any water activity.
"The huge message with this is people need to wear their life-jackets when they're in their boats and engaged in water sports. This is a situation where a tire tube tipped over and if you are not wearing a life-jacket you stand the chance of being knocked unconscious, you're going to bang into the other people who are in the tire tube with you, you don't have the opportunity to put that floatation device on after you're in the water," Gillan said.
"It has to be on. You have to wear it before you're out on the water engaged in water sports."
Police, fire and civilian boats, jet skis, and a helicopter, have been used to search for the missing man.
Gillan says search and rescue have also been going house to house letting people in the area know police are engaged in a recovery mission.
"And to simply call 911 if you happen to see this person," he said.
This case comes just a week after two boaters went missing in Coal Lake.
Friends and family of Everett Westerneng, 19, and Dallas Simons, 26 continue to search for the pair.
A police chopper was used to scan the lake earlier this week but police tell CTV News there's still no sign of the men.
With files from Amanda Anderson