Date of Release:  January 7, 2013

(Poplar Hill, ON)  On January 5, 2013, the Nishnawbe-Aski Police Service North West Region Crime Unit were notified about a snow grooming machine that had gone through the ice near Poplar Hill First Nation with the lone male operator missing.

The assistance of the Ontario Provincial Police Underwater Search and Recovery Unit was requested and the body of fifty-two (52) year-old Thomas MCDONALD of Kenora, Ontario was recovered.

On January 7, 2013, a post-mortem examination was conducted in Kenora, Ontario with the cause of death identified as drowning.

Caution should be used in all cases of winter road travel and if ice thickness is unknown then stay clear of the area.  The Ministry of Northern Development and Mines has a telephone contact list published on their website.  Here you may find a contact list of First Nation communities for winter roads updates:

Poplar Hill First Nation is located approximately 600 km northwest of Thunder Bay, Ontario.

For further information, please contact:

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Sgt. Jackie George

Media Relations- Phone 807-346-6593

Nishnawbe –Aski Police Headquarters

Thunder Bay, Ontario