A search and rescue operation off the Florida coast involving an overdue vessel believed to be carrying about 20 people was suspended on Friday, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
The service announced in a news release the blue and white 29-foot Mako Cuddy Cabin vessel was reported as missing on Tuesday after it didn’t arrive at its expected location.
The vessel departed from Bimini in the Bahamas one day before Coast Guard District Seven watchstanders received the missing report. The overdue ship was reported to be en route to Lake Worth in Florida.
The U.S. Coast Guard said they covered about 17,000 square miles, roughly double the size of Massachusetts, together with partner agencies between the Bahamas and South Florida for about 84 hours before the search was suspended on Friday around noon.
— USCGSoutheast (@USCGSoutheast) December 31, 2020
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of the missing people,” said Capt. Stephen V. Burdian of the Seventh District Chief of Response. “I encourage anyone with information about the people aboard to contact us as soon as possible.”
The U.S. Coast Guard said surface and air units by Patrick Air Force, Royal Bahamas Defence Force, and Bahamas Air Sea Rescue have assisted during the search operation.
The identities of the people that remain missing were not provided, but the vessel is believed to have 20 people aboard, according to a statement released earlier this week.