HIGHGATE: Vermont State Police are conducting a search of area waterways in Highgate today after they were notified of a missing person last night.
According to spokesperson Adam Silverman of the Vermont State Police, they were notified at around 6:50 pm of a missing snowmobiler.
Michael Rich, 39, of Swanton had been riding a snow machine with his friend Rahel Barrows, 51, also of Swanton. Sometime around 4:15 pm, their machines broke through the ice on a creek that feeds into Lake Champlain.
The two were able to get themselves out of the water and make their way back to a camp to stay warm. That camp was vacant when they arrived, according to Silverman.
Not long later, Michael Rich left the camp, returning to his home to get another snowmobile from his girlfriend’s home, intending to return to his friend at the camp.
Police say they discovered that snowmobile a short distance later with its hood up, apparently stopped with mechanical issues.
A search for Michael Rich all night has yet to be fruitful, according to police, who are continuing to search the area.
Authorities called in a DHART helicopter to help with the search. They were able to locate the cabin, and safely rescued Rahel Barrows, according to Silverman.
The search continues for Rich today, according to police. They are continuing to search in the area of Platt Road in Highgate, where he was last seen.
State police have said they will issue more information as it becomes available, but have asked you to contact them at (802) 524-5993 if you have any information on the whereabouts of Mr. Rich.