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UPDATE: Ongoing water rescue operation - South Saskatchewan River in the area of the Victoria Boathouse

For immediate release: August 21, 2019 - 7:10pm

The Saskatoon Fire Department has concluded at the scene of a water rescue operation near the Victoria Boathouse.

At approximately 5:42 this evening, a firefighter-diver performing a hand search of the river's bottom located the body of a deceased male a short distance from where credible witness reports had identified his last known location as being. Upon recovery and removal of the body from the river, the scene was turned over to the Saskatoon Police Service and the Office of the Chief Coroner for further investigation.

There will be no further updates provided from the Saskatoon Fire Department in relation to this incident.


At approximately 1:33 this afternoon, the Saskatoon Fire Department received a 911 call alerting to a person in distress in the area of the Victoria Boathouse.

One fire engine, two water rescue units, and one battalion chief were dispatched for response. Multiple river users witnessed the submersion of the individual; the initial 911 caller provided a description to fire dispatchers and remained on scene to direct fire department personnel to the individual's last known location. 

Water rescue boats equipped with sonar technology and firefighter-divers have been deployed onto the South Saskatchewan River. An immediate search has commenced to identify any abnormalities below the water's surface.

Members of the public are advised to avoid using the river in the area of the Victoria Boathouse to maintain the safety and proficiency of water rescue personnel working on scene.

This is an ongoing incident and additional information will be provided as it becomes known.