National Guard, Utah Task Force One join search for missing child after deadly flash flood in Hildale

Posted at 7:48 PM, Sep 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-17 09:26:42-04

HILDALE, Utah - The search for a missing 6-year-old boy swept away in Monday’s fatal flash flood continued Wednesday, this time joined by members of the Utah National Guard and the state’s elite Utah Task Force One.

Twenty-four members of Utah Task Force One and 26 members of the Utah National Guard scoured the banks of Short Creek. It’s ground that volunteers already covered in their recovery of 12 flood victims, but commanders say this is a deeper search.

“We’re going back through with the dog teams,” said Utah National Guard Liaison Capt. Brian Yardley. “Recovering the areas that are immediately through the portion of town between the culverts.”

Search and rescue crews said they’d focus on debris piles, checking areas that may have been overlooked.

“We can kind of see where the water has run,” said Utah Task Force One task leader Wade Russell. “Where that debris has kind of piled up at. And we’re going to do some more focused searching in that area.”

The in-depth search will cover about six miles of ground on the Short Creek. It’s slow going because of the creek is still very dangerous. Fifteen foot sand walls line portions of the creek, and heavy saturation means they could fall with the slightest movement.

Russell said it’s also a mission they’re taking great care with because of the nature of the search.

“We’re mothers, fathers. We have families as well,” Russell said. “So for us to be able to come here and help out, is a great thing for us.”

The teams searched until just after 7 p.m. Wednesday. The search returned no results, but team members said they’re prepared to continue as long as they’re needed.