Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

Research at Dolbeau-Mistassini: less manpower to find the little girl

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A police officer observes the Mistassibi River with binoculars, Wednesday.

  • Alexandra Duchaine (View profile)Alexandra Duchaine

If the search continues Thursday morning to find the body of the little girl who fell into the Mistassibi River while she was sliding , the numbers are much smaller than at the very beginning of operations. Only two police officers will be stationed along the river to scrupulously scrutinize it.

A third will be at the Dolbeau-Mistassini police station.

When we have three police officers for a similar search, it is because we have really does a lot of things. We did what was humanly possible to do at the police level for the research, explained Hugues Beaulieu, spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec (SQ), speaking to Radio-Canada on Thursday morning.

Efforts to find the little girl are diminishing day by day. The police are in constant communication with the family to inform them of the progress of the operations. If they were to end, the family would be the first to know. However, the time has not stopped.

Today, there will be two police officers who will be assigned to strategic observation points which have been determined by the Sûreté du Québec research technician, noted the SQ spokesperson.

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The police will be near the Mistassibi River and will see if the young girl who sank seven days ago resurfaces, explained the spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec, Hugues Beaulieu, on Radio-Canada on Thursday. morning.

Part of the ice covering the Mistassibi River has melted in recent days due to milder temperatures, which could allow x27;see the little girl.

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At dawn of operations, a drone, a helicopter and a nautical team had been deployed . Divers have also explored the river. The latter presents powerful currents.

Divers cannot go diving in such rapids. They will go to places called swimming pools. These are sections of the river that are calmer, argued Hugues Beaulieu.

The Sûreté du Québec observed the river meticulously.

We did tests with objects that we threw at the place where the little girl fell into the water. It always takes us to places where it’s calmer. The divers went to dive there. Unfortunately, it is in vain.

A quote from Hugues Beaulieu, spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec

However, divers could return in a few weeks to dive elsewhere in the waterway. However, they must wait for the layer of ice covering the river to thicken before they can transport their equipment.

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On Sunday, the divers used a crane to get into the water.

After seven days of searching like this, the temperatures are changing. Slowly, not quickly, we're heading back into winter. Obviously, winter had forgotten us for the Christmas period. We are going to return to winter and, for us, it will make it easier to travel on the ice to continue research, said Hugues Beaulieu.

He says a helicopter could also be deployed today, weather conditions permitting. A little before 9 a.m., excessive fog covered Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean.

Friday, a four-year-old child who was sliding near the Motel Chute des pères, in Dolbeau-Mistassini, fell into the Mistassibi River (New window), under the gaze of her mother, when the fence which demarcated the river gave way. Since that day, the police have been working to find her.

However, they stop during the night, as a security measure. Every evening, the police make the decision whether or not to continue operations. They will do it again Thursday evening.

On Tuesday, what was a rescue operation became a process to find the little girl's body.

The fence, which belongs to the City of Dolbeau-Mistassini, did it give way under the weight of the little girl or was it damaged? An investigation is underway to shed light on the circumstances of the accident.

The mayor of the municipality of Lac-Saint-Jean, André Guy, prefers to wait for the conclusions before commenting on the matter.

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