Chretien Search Intensifies
Monday, May 9, 2011 - 3:25 PM
Monday, 9 May, 2011 | 3:10 PM |
by Jennifer Faerber |
Search teams are using horses, ATVs and a helicopter to search for Al Chretien.
The 59 year old from Penticton is still missing, 47 days after leaving his wife and their stranded van to get help.
The van got bogged on a Nevada logging road and it's now being used as a starting point in the search.
"He had told his wife that he was trying to make it to Mountain City before he left the van and I believe that's about 100km away from where the van was," says Global BC reporter Raumina Daya, who's reporting from the scene.
Al and his wife Rita were presumed dead as the months passed since their disappearance.
The couple never made it to Las Vegas, after setting off for a trade show on March 19, but on Friday some hunters on ATVs found Rita in the van, where she'd been living off snow and trail mix for seven weeks.
The telephone tip line had been shut down and the searches called off, but the human engine has revved to life again.
Air and ground teams are scouring the area around the van for any sign of Al.
"They've kind of given up hope that they're going to find somebody alive. He's been out there for 47 days now. It's a really remote area and the fact is without food or shelter, it would be difficult for anybody to make it this long," says Daya.
Lesli Ellis from the US Bureau of Land Management says the area is mountainous, muddy and there are still large snow banks.
"We were able to get a helicopter up this morning but the weather has preculded that from continuing... we are focused on finding Albert and hoping for the best," says Ellis.
"We were able to acquire a GPS unit identical to the one he was using so we're hoping that we can use that to re-trace his footsteps."