Brian Laundrie could be battling hypothermia in weeks & feelings of 'guilt' may see him make a 'mistake' while hiking
BRIAN Laundrie could be battling hypothermia within weeks if he is in the Florida wilderness and a feeling of “guilt” may see him make a mistake while “hiking”, a survivalist says.
FBI detectives and cops continue to search for Gabby Petito’s fiancé after he was reported missing on September 17 by his parents.
Police started to look for Laundrie after his parents allegedly told cops that the 23-year-old was going for a hike in Florida's Carlton Nature Reserve.
The national park in Sarasota is a 25,000-acre boggy marshland that is infested with scorpions, alligators, and reptiles.
Survival expert Dave Canterbury said that if Laundrie remained in the Carlton Reserve it would be “very difficult” for him to survive for this amount of time.
He told The Sun: “For as long as he’s been gone and the trouble they are having finding him, I find it hard to believe that’s he is surviving in the wild solely at this point.
“I think he has to resupply somewhere – if he’s still alive – because that’s what he’s used to doing.”
Canterbury explained that surviving in the wilderness is different from hiking on the Appalachian Trail – where Americans can visit convenience stores and outfitters to resupply.
He said people do not “need a lot of survival skills” when hiking on the scenic route.
One of Gabby pals Rose Davis told People: “He is out in the wilderness, I promise you. He lived in the Appalachians by himself for months.”
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Temperature swings of up to 30 degrees are likely to hit Florida during fall, increasing the risk that Laundrie could end up battling hypothermia.
He said: “If it’s not happening now, then within the next few weeks, it’s going to be a major problem.”
Canterbury speculated there is a greater chance Laundrie may become hypothermic if his body is already wet – either from sweat or wading through marshy swamplands.
FBI detectives issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie after he was accused of swiping a Capital One debit card between August 31 and September 1.
Canterbury said: "Psychology is a big part of survival. Not only the fact that he’s trying to survive, but he’s also running and being pursued.”
He alleged that guilt may be playing on Laundrie’s mind.
Laundrie was identified as a person of interest surrounding Gabby’s disappearance. He was not named as a suspect.
Gabby’s remains were found on September 19 in a Wyoming national park – a week after being reported missing by her family.
Canterbury added: “There are a lot of things that are playing on his psychology that will end up make himself turn in, make a mistake, or get himself in a perilous situation.
'PLAYING ON HIS PSYCHOLOGY'
“All of those things combined will give him problems.”
Canterbury said survivalists should carry with them a cutting tool, a combustion device, cover elements that protect the body, containers that are used to disinfect water, and cordage.
He coined the checklist: “The Five C’s of Survivability”.
He said: “Those five items are probably five things that he’s lacking. He may have one of them – he may have two of them. He probably does not have all of them.
“Unless he’s a very skilled survivalist, it’s going to be very difficult for him long term without at least having all of five of those items, and the knowledge and ability to put them to use.”
Canterbury warned that Laundrie faces difficulty accessing drinking water in the wilderness.
The survivalist said the 23-year-old would need to boil water to kill pathogens or use a filtration tool.
But, water is likely to be full of tannins after heavy downpours.
Tannins are commonly found in the roots and bark of trees but high concentrations can be harmful to humans.
Canterbury said: “It’s a Russian roulette deal if you just drink the water.”
Survival expert Mark Burrow told The Sarasota Herald-Tribune: "It's dehydration that's the real danger."
Canterbury also speculated that Laundrie may use a tarp to control his body temperature but warned that it wouldn’t be effective long-term as there is a risk that the nylon could tear.
The probe at Carlton Reserve continues but law enforcement officers are believed to be conducting probes near the Fort de Soto Park area.
Reality TV star Duane Chapman, known as Dog the Bounty Hunter, received a tip that Laundrie and his parents visited the campground on September 6.
His team scoured an area deep in the woods of Shell Island and appeared to find a Monster can.
He said: “We're out here at the island. This would be and could be a perfect spot for him to hide.
"Not too many people out here, but there's a lot of environmental things we're gonna fight… The search now is really on."
K9 teams were brought in to assist the search operation.
The bounty hunter's team found no conclusive evidence that Laundrie was on Egmont Key by Wednesday evening, Fox reports.
Dog also speculated that Laundrie could be moving from island to island in a canoe through the park.
Internet sleuths claim they have spotted Laundrie in Mexico, Canada, Alabama, and close to his home in North Port Florida but alleged sightings have led to dead ends.
Dave Canterbury is a survival expert and the author of Bushcraft 101 which made The New York Times bestseller list. He teaches survival techniques at the Pathfinder School in Ohio.
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