ESTACADA, Ore. – An Oregon man raced along the Clackamas River but couldn't keep up with his 6-year-old daughter who had fallen into the stream and was swept on downriver, authorities said.
Rescue workers looked for Vinesa Snegur Sunday afternoon and resumed their search Monday morning along the waterway that's running fast and cold from a recent winter storm.
"It was just a second of inattention," said Sgt. James Rhodes of the Clackamas County sheriff's office. "He turned away. Then, splash, and she fell in. He ran and tried to keep up with her, but he was unable to."
Rhodes said the girl and her parents, Igor and Marina Snegur, are from southeast Portland and drove Sunday to play in the snow. They parked near Austin Hot Springs in the Mount Hood National Forest where a road is close to the stream.
The spot is about 60 miles southeast of Portland. There's no cell service, and the family couldn't report her missing until they got to a phone at a ranger station an hour later to call for help, Rhodes said.
The water temperature Monday morning was just above freezing, and the river is carrying a heavy load of debris, imperiling rescue workers, he said. Poor visibility kept a National Guard helicopter on the ground Monday morning.