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Mushroom picking kits put together by New Hazelton police

Survival packs have been put together by New Hazelton RCMP for those who go mushroom picking. 

Police say this is so they are equipped with what elements could bring.

Mushroom picking is considered challenging and sometimes tragic because of weather and the varying nature of the terrain. 

The kits include the basic necessities needed to make fire and shelter and Monoshee Outdoors in Armstrong was able to secure all of the contents.

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Each kit contains:

  • Fire starter
  • Whistle
  • Water purifying tablets
  • Survival blanket (silver reflective on one side for heat retention and bright orange on the other for increased visibility)
  • Two meals

Indigenous Police Services were able to obtain backpacks, not only to contain the survival kit but to also be used to transport the mushrooms. 

According to Corporal David Goodyear, within his first year in New Hazelton he spent a considerable amount of time with Search and Rescue looking for people who became lost while mushroom picking.

He added that he noticed the missing person was not prepared to be in the bush at all. 

“I have a personal rule that I never go into the bush without being prepared to spend a couple of nights there in emergency conditions,” he said. 

Goodyear also said that he believes the region would see a reduction in missing persons but the kit would increase the survivability and decrease the amount of time required to locate the missing person. 

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The kits were distributed by officers to the Indigenous communities around New Hazelton where officers travelled to each of the seven villages to present each Band with an allotment of kits. 

Additionally, police say that there were significant reduction in calls related to missing persons from several per week to one for the entire mushroom picking season.

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