GPS Tracking Used to Help Locate Missing Fisherman

10 Jul 2018

Authorities are becoming increasingly concerned about the whereabouts of one missing fisherman in Prince Gallitzin State Park. According to officials, the man has been reported missing since June 22.

That evening, a park ranger stumbled upon the 67-year-old man’s boat. The park ranger noticed the motorboat was running, but he couldn’t see anyone operating it. He decided to investigate. The ranger determined the boat was in neutral and the owner had vanished.

Police spoke with the boat owner’s family who told police that the victim didn’t know how to swim. They told police that he rarely wore a lifejacket, and authorities confirmed the boat had all life jackets onboard. Divers have now been enlisted to assist in a widespread search of the 1,635-acre lake.

To narrow down the last known positions of the man, police have utilized an onboard GPS navigational system. GPS tracking for boats is often used in devices like fish finders, so authorities were able to narrow down the exact route the missing man was taking before he went missing.

Unfortunately, investigators determined the man had traveled an extensive and vast area on the lake. They have focused their search around specific areas, but they have not yet found any sign of the missing fisherman.

The Christian Aid Ministry is assisting in the search and rescue effort. They have contributed a sonar device to help authorities scan the water in search for the victim. The Pennsylvania State Police have also assisted by searching the entire lake by helicopter. Other agencies assisting with the search include the Red Cross of Clearfield, K-9 search units, several firefighting units, water rescue services, the State Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Prince Gallitzin State Park Staff.

Experts concluded that the conditions of the lake and the weight of the victim may be contributing to the difficulty in locating the fisherman if he drowned in the lake. They determined it would take approximately seven to ten days before his body would resurface, so it’s highly likely that divers will continue searching the water for the next several days.

Teams are also scanning the shoreline for any evidence that the fisherman may have wandered off on land.

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