Search suspended for youth missing in N.S. floods | CBC News

The search for the only person still missing after devastating floods in Nova Scotia has been temporarily suspended, say RCMP. 

N.S. RCMP Supt. Sean Auld said in a release Monday that due to dangerously deep pockets of water in the secondary search zone, the search has been called off until more water drains.

“Despite an extensive search to date, we, unfortunately have not yet located the missing youth,” said Auld. 

A photo of a smiling boy, a smiling little girl and a man with glasses.
Six-year-old Colton Sisco, left, six-year-old Natalie Harnish, centre, and Nick Holland, 52, died during the floods that devastated parts of Nova Scotia on July 21 and 22, 2023. (Arbor Memorial/Ronald A. Walker Funeral Homes)

Four people, including a man, two children and the youth went missing on July 22 after their vehicles became submerged in floods in the Brooklyn area of West Hants Regional Muncipality. 

Last week, search teams recovered the bodies of the man and two children, who have been identified as Nicholas Holland, 52, and Natalie Harnish and Colton Sisco, both 6.

The identity of the missing youth has not been revealed by the police. 

The RCMP said initial efforts to locate the youth in the primary search area in Brooklyn finished on July 27 and since then have been focused on a secondary area, “immediately adjacent” to the Brooklyn search area.

Eighty-five per cent of it has now been drained and searched, and police said search activities will resume once the deep pockets of water, which are expected to recede naturally in the coming days, are drained.

Police said they remain hopeful the search will prove fruitful. 

“The goal remains to bring home the missing youth to their family,” said Auld. “As soon as it is safe to do so the searchers will return to that task.”

A tertiary search that ran from the shoreline of Halls Harbour to Brooklyn and from Maitland to Brooklyn concluded on Sunday.

“To date searchers have covered more than 495 acres of ground, 104 square kilometres of watershed and tidal waters, and 417 square kilometres of shoreline by air,” the RCMP said in a release.

Police said the search has been led by the N.S. Ground Search and Rescue Association, with support from numerous fire departments and the Department of Natural Resources, among others. 

About 65 searchers have been helping out each day, RCMP said. 

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