Boy, 9, presumed dead in Alaskan glacier crevasse

April 14, 2013 at 9:57 PM
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska, April 14 (UPI) -- A 9-year-old Alaska boy was presumed dead after the snowmobile he was riding fell into a deep glacier crevasse, state police said Sunday.

State troopers told the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner Shjohn Brown of Fairbanks plummeted about 200 feet into the icy hole about 3:30 p.m. Saturday. State police spokeswoman Megan Peters said in an email authorities do not believe he survived and were working on a plan to extricate his body, the newspaper said.

Troopers said Shjohn was riding with his father and others at the Arctic Man Classic and Sno-Go event when the accident occurred. The troopers said the boy drove around a small mound and failed to reappear. The father went to check on him and discovered the boy had fallen through a hole, commonly called a moulin, formed when spring water gradually erodes the glacial ice.

Peters stated a climber made it to the bottom of the crevasse, but was unable to locate the boy. The boy's goggles, helmet and snowmobile were found. Shjohn was believed to be buried in deep snow at the bottom of the hole.

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