Rescue effort to find the woman who fell into a Fresno canal Tuesday continues

Local News

FRESNO, California (KSEE/KGPE) — Rescue efforts continue to find a woman who disappeared into a Fresno canal Tuesday.

According to investigators a woman, later identified as Fannie Chindapheth, fell into a canal Tuesday in the area of McKinley and Millbrook Avenues in Fresno. Fresno fire crews did what they describe as a “hasty, aggressive search” for two hours with no result.

Photo of Fannie Chindapheth

On Wednesday, multiple agencies including the Fresno Irrigation District, decided to disrupt the flow of the canal for a short time, according to Fresno Fire crews.

“Last night about 1:00 a.m., back at Pine Flat [Dam] they slowed the flow down briefly,” said Shane Brown from the Fresno Fire Department. “That reverberates down through the Valley, it takes several hours for us to see the effects of that.”

At around 10:30 a.m. Friday, the water in the canal had dropped 2 to 3 feet and was expected to last about 1½ hours. This improves visibility for divers looking for Chindapheth, and allows rescuers to search quickly through murky waters.

“It’s still a high-risk operation,” said Brown. “We have multiple crews staged to the east of our location with eyes on the water to make sure that if anything is coming our way, we’re notified.”

Fire crews are still hopeful that Chindapheth got out of the water on her own. If anyone has any information on her location they are asked to call the Fresno Fire Department at 559-621-4357.

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