Snowmobilers rescued after falling through ice on Bennett Lake

Carcross RCMP officers rescued two men who had fallen through ice on the lake’s north shore Thursday

A Trans North helicopter prepares to leave the northwestern shore of Bennett Lake with two rescued snowmobilers and a member from Whitehorse RCMP on board. (Submitted photo/Yukon RCMP)

Carcross RCMP rescued two snowmobilers last week who had fallen through the ice on Bennett Lake.

According to a Yukon RCMP press release, Carcross RCMP received a dispatch just after 2 p.m. on Jan. 10 about two men who had fallen through the ice on the north shore of Bennett Lake, near Carcross, while snowmobiling.

Two officers, equipped with winter survival and rescue gear, headed towards the scene on their snowmobiles. Within about 20 minutes, with the use of their binoculars, the officers spotted the two men in the distance.

At 2:49 p.m., the officers found the men about 30 feet from the shore, with one of them having made his way out onto the ice and the other standing on his submerged snowmobile.

Officers extended a ladder to the man still in the water, the press release says, and were able to get him to a “safe, dry area,” where they started a fire while waiting for a rescue helicopter to arrive from Whitehorse.

The officers also gave the men, who were “mildly hypothermic but conscious and alert,” sleeping bags to help them warm up. The helicopter arrived shortly after to transport them to Whitehorse General Hospital for assessment.

“This incident is an example of the reality of policing in the North. We may not tell these stories often, but our employees risk their lives to save others in situations like this on a regular basis,” Insp. Lindsay Ellis, district operations officer, said in the press release.

“I am very proud of the response from the Carcross members, and thankful for the strong assistance from the Search and Rescue Coordinator and Whitehorse Detachment, including our dispatchers. They played an important role in ensuring everyone involved in this incident remained safe.”

The press release also reminds the public that despite recent low temperatures, not all waterways in the Yukon are stable and completely frozen, and people should check the thickness of the ice and pack winter survival gear with them before heading out.

“In the winter, waterways in the Yukon become highways, especially for those heading out bison hunting, to check their trap lines, and more. This has been a reality for many years, and it will continue,” Cpl. Cam Long, the Yukon RCMP’s divisional search and rescue coordinator, said in the press release. “We’re just asking people to be mindful of the change in weather and lighter temperatures we’ve been seeing, which can greatly impact the ice thickness in areas that would traditionally be frozen solid at this time of year.”

Yukon RCMP was not able to provide an update on the men’s conditions on Jan. 14.

Contact Jackie Hong at jackie.hong@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

It’s official: most of the Peel watershed is now protected

Leaders inked the final plan on Aug. 22

TIMELINE: 15 years of Peel planning

The signing of the final plan for the Peel marks the end of 15 years of planning — and court fights

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

RBC Training Ground targets Yukon archer

Vincent Menard is one of 100 athletes from across Canada heading to Calgary

Child and youth advocate speaks out on school attendance

Young Yukoners are entitled to an education, says King

Whitehorse’s Hunter Vincent on the podium at Montreal Eau Vive

Whitehorse’s Hunter Vincent was in Montreal to compete in the annual Montreal… Continue reading

Sunny skies for 2019 Rick Janowicz Long Lake Triathlon

“It was sunny and breezy — perfect temperatures — and I think people enjoyed it”

Driving with Jens: What do milk and your child’s car seat have in common?

Things have changed since kids used to sprawl across the back window of the car

YCCMA Mosquito Harescramble includes record numbers for return of ladies class

“I think it’s a good indication it’s turning to a family sport versus what it has been in the past”

Yukonomist: Fun facts for your next violent barbecue debate about government jobs

Have you ever been at a barbecue where someone starts talking loudly… Continue reading

Yukon disc golfers compete in Trilogy Challenge

“We definitely are seeing a lot of new people starting into the sport”

History Hunter: New book celebrates Yukon’s most colourful hotel

If the walls could talk, what tales they would tell. But the… Continue reading

Most Read