Robot to find the body of a young boy believed to have drowned during a family kayaking trip in WA

Desperate search for eight-year-old boy who mysteriously disappeared on family vacation four days ago intensifies – but authorities fear they will find only his body

  • Searching for eight-year-old in southern Western Australia is now a rescue mission
  • Boy had camped with family and reported missing on Sunday morning
  • He is believed to have drowned in a kayaking accident after going out alone
  • A specialized robotic camera will be used to search for his body underwater










The search for an eight-year-old boy believed to have been involved in a kayaking incident in a Western Australian river is now a rescue mission.

A specialized robotic camera will be used to search for the body of an eight-year-old boy believed to have drowned while kayaking in southern Western Australia.

The boy had camped with family at Fernhook Falls near Walpole, about 400 km southeast of Perth.

The search for an eight-year-old boy believed to have been involved in a kayaking incident in a Western Australian river (pictured) is now a recovery mission

A land search with 60 volunteers from the state emergency service (photo) has been suspended

A land search with 60 volunteers from the state emergency service (photo) has been suspended

He was reported missing from the campground on Sunday morning, with police later saying he had been involved in a boating incident on the river.

A land search that lasted several days and involved more than 60 state emergency services volunteers has been suspended and police are now concentrating on recovering his body from the river.

Chief Inspector Kim Travers said the boy had ventured alone at the top of the falls on Sunday morning.

The search for the land took several days and the police now concentrated on recovering his body from the river

The search for the land took several days and the police now concentrated on recovering his body from the river

Police divers search various parts of the river (pictured).  Drones have also been deployed due to poor visibility

Police divers search various parts of the river (pictured). Drones have also been deployed due to poor visibility

He had previously told his older brother that he wanted to paddle through foam on the water, but was told it was too dangerous.

“The brother heard him call for help and immediately ran down the small path … but he couldn’t see his brother,” said Supt Travers.

“What he did see was the little blue plastic kayak sitting in the tree that his brother had (carried) over.”

A short time later, his father found the boy’s sweater jammed under a rock.

The family stayed in a cabin in the Mount Frankland National Park and had no problems kayaking all weekend.

Police say boy's brother heard him yell but couldn't locate him, only found a kayak stuck in a tree

Police say boy’s brother heard him yell but couldn’t locate him, only found a kayak stuck in a tree

“It’s a loving, caring, very close-knit family. This is a major trauma for them,” said Supt Travers.

Police divers have searched parts of the river and a drone has also been deployed to search the water, with visibility being dim after heavy recent rainfall. A specialized robotic camera will also be deployed.

The search area covers approximately 200 meters and includes rapids.

The family stayed in a cabin in Mount Frankland National Park and had no problems kayaking this weekend

The family stayed in a cabin in Mount Frankland National Park and had no problems kayaking this weekend

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