By The Canadian Press on December 26, 2023.
DOLBEAU-MISTASSINI, Que. – Quebec provincial police say the search for a four-year-old girl who fell into a river last week is no longer a rescue operation, but a recovery mission.
The child has been missing since Friday, when she fell into the Mistassibi River in Dolbeau-Mistassini, Que. – about 240 kilometres north of Quebec City – while sledding with her mother near the riverbank.
Police officers have been searching the river ever since, with officers surveying the banks, a nautical team monitoring the waters and a helicopter scanning the area from the sky.
A team of divers was also assisting in the search but provincial police spokesperson Sgt. Hugues Beaulieu said Monday they had suspended their work due to dangerous ice conditions.
Beaulieu says nightfall has forced police to pause the search for security reasons every evening since Saturday, but he expects efforts to resume on Wednesday.
Provincial police published photos on Monday of the clothes the girl was wearing – including a rainbow-patterned coat and violet snow pants – and asked members of the public to report any sightings along the river.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 26, 2023.