After recent rescues, police remind hunters to be prepared before heading into the bush
SUDBURY -- It has been a busy few days for Ontario Provincial Police in northern Ontario. On Monday morning, Sudbury OPP found a 38-year-old man with his eight-year-old nephew on a trail just south of Low Water Lake off of Highway 144.
The pair got lost while bird hunting Sunday and didn't return to their camp on Bushtail Lake, off of Highway 144.
Before calling police, family members searched the area and found their all-terrain vehicle. That's where the search began when police arrived.
“They were found yesterday (Monday) morning, but they had to spend the night in the bush,” said Const. Michelle Coulombe of the Sudbury OPP.
“Good thing they were somewhat prepared and were able to make a fire and keep warm. They stayed put and at sun up they had started to walk again and that’s when our officers found them.”
Minor injuries, hypothermia
On Sunday morning, the Algoma OPP found a 69-year-old man who had minor injuries and a bit of hypothermia. Police found him in Meen Township and he was transferred to hospital in Elliot Lake.
As temperatures in northern Ontario continue to drop quickly, police are reminding hunters that it's even more important to be prepared.
“Hypothermia at this time of year can set in really quickly,” said Coulombe.
“So you want to make sure you’re prepared. Dress in layers, look at the weather forecast. If they’re calling for snow and rain, make sure you’re dressed appropriately and maybe avoid going out at that time.”
There is also no way of knowing what cellular service will be like in the bush. But staff at an outdoor store in Sudbury told CTV they are constantly reminding hunters there are still ways to contact someone without a cellphone.
“Whether it be a compass or a GPS, telling people where you are is a really big factor,” said Ramakko's Source for Adventure manager Brandice Ramakko-Burke.
“If you don’t have a cellphone or cellphone service where you’re going, you can get two-way communicators (with) satellite technology for messaging, to message your location to someone else, or it has a SOS feature.”
Both the OPP and Ramakko's staff said another crucial part to hunter safety is wearing bright orange. It allows other hunters to see you, and is easier for first responders to spot people who are in a bright colour if you are in trouble and need help.