Heavy icebreaker joins search for missing sealer, boat
A heavy icebreaker will join in the search Friday for a missing Quebec sealer and the boat that capsized last weekend off the coast of Cape Breton.
The Canadian Coast Guard resumed its search Thursday for Carl Aucoin and the 12-metre fishing trawler L'Acadien II, which capsized when it hit an ice block as it was being towed by an icebreaker early Saturday in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
Three sealers were killed. Aucoin is missing and presumed drowned in the icy waters. Two members of the crew survived.
Two light icebreakers began the search Thursday based on the last known co-ordinates of the trawler — taking into account drift patterns and ice conditions. The heavy class icebreaker CCGS Terry Fox will assist with the search.
A Canadian Forces Aurora long-range aircraft has also been conducting a patrol of the area. Canadian Forces divers have been asked to assist with recovery efforts if the vessel is located.
Many residents of Îles de la Madeleine in Quebec, where the sealers were from, were upset the search for Aucoin was called off only 12 hours after the incident The islands' mayor and Aucoin's mother had asked for the search to resume.
Îles de la Madeleine Mayor Joel Arseneau said the municipal chapel would be open to the entire community on Friday for public mourning. Funerals for the three sealers will take place Saturday afternoon.
The federal safety agency, RCMP and Canadian Coast Guard are all conducting investigations of the accident.