The search for the two missing men and their planes was officially called off this afternoon.
The decision to suspend the search was made by the search commander based in Belleville in agreement with the JRCC Trenton. The Canadian Aeronautical and Maritime Search manual gave them directions on how to make a decision.
Richard Gough, commander of the Air Task Force in Sault, says that due to survival patterns, they have decided to discontinue the search after covering all areas with a high probability of a search several times.
“We’ve exhausted all traces at this point,” Gough said. “We searched the area to the end, but we didn’t find anything.” If there was a new clue, it could spur further searches. But at the moment, we are passing it on to the OPP as a case of missing persons. “
One helicopter was sent this morning to check some of the targets of interest, but nothing was found, which was the final search for what turned out to be a 10-day mission.
Throughout the process, the search and rescue were in contact with the relatives of two missing men and extended their thoughts to the families who had to go through this difficult period.
“We’ve been in constant contact with the families since the beginning, and they’re understandably upset,” Gough said. “They have supported our efforts and I think they are grateful to see how much we have poured into this search in the last week and a half.” The search team continues to think of families, and our thoughts and prayers are with them. ”