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Search for fishermen missing off Samoa suspended – update #6

18 December 11.40am

Search for fishermen missing off Samoa suspended – update #6
The search for four missing fishing boats and their 10 crew missing off Samoa following last week’s cyclone was suspended this morning. Three days of searching involving a RNZAF P3 Orion and a French Navy Gardian aircraft failed to find any sign of the men.

The Samoa Police Superintendent after consultation with the Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCCNZ) has asked to scale down the search for the men, from, after the RNZAF P3 Orion completed a final visual search of one of the smaller islands this morning.

RCCNZ Search and Rescue Coordinator Neville Blakemore said the search could be reactivated if new information came to hand.

“We are confident that the area has been thoroughly covered in difficult circumstances,” he said. “This is obviously a tragic outcome for the families of the men involved and our thoughts are with them.”

While the submerged hull of a vessel was found, it is yet to be determined if this was one of the four missing vessels. The aerial and sea search, by Samoa Police, found no sign of the men.


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