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Update on Search of Clutha River for Missing Teenager

Update on Search of Clutha River for Missing Teenager

Jetboats and LandSAR volunteers have completed today's search of the Clutha River for missing local teenager, Blake Sinclair.

Eighteen-year-old Blake, who is from the Clutha Valley, went missing in the Clutha River on Saturday afternoon (12 January) while kneeboarding behind a boat.

Today was the third day that searchers have been looking for Mr Sinclair.

Four members of the National Police Dive Squad have spent today searching an area downstream from where Mr Sinclair was last seen. The squad is continuing its search until later this evening.

In addition to the Police Dive Squad, 18 jetboats each with three people on board, searched the river. Twenty-five local LandSAR volunteers conducted a land-based search along the river's edge.

All of the above teams have been searching areas downstream from the Waitahuna River mouth.

Five Otago Regional Council staff also assisted with the land-based search using quadbikes to search the Clutha River mouth and adjacent coastline area.

There has been no sign of Mr Sinclair.

Police say that the search will now be scaled down. Tomorrow morning a team of four jetboats will undertake a search along riverbank areas near to where Mr Sinclair was last seen. The family also plans to continue a private search.

Over the coming week, Police will continue to monitor the level and clarity of the Clutha River. The river level is expected to drop to normal capacity within the next two weeks. The situation in relation to any further search activity will be regularly assessed over the coming week.

Blake's family has been overwhelmed with the response and support from the community. Police would also like to thank all volunteers involved with the search.

ENDS

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