Coast Guard Suspends Search For Missing Fishing Vessel Crew

The Coast Guard said Tuesday it called off the search for the four-member crew of a Maine fishing boat that sank off Massachusetts.

The Coast Guard searched an area of approximately 2,066 square miles for more than 38 hours, Capt. Wesley Hester said in a release.

“The decision to suspend a search is never an easy one," Hester said. “We extend our condolences to the friends and loved ones of these fishermen during this trying time.”

The 82-foot (25-meter) Emmy Rose, based in Portland, Maine, went down about 20 miles (32 kilometers) northeast of Provincetown, Massachusetts, around 1:30 a.m. Monday. It was heading for Gloucester, Massachusetts.

The crew did not make any sort of mayday or distress call, and the Coast Guard was alerted when the vessel’s emergency beacon made contact with the water and sent out its signal, the Coast Guard has said.

The commercial fishing vessel’s owner reported that the Emmy Rose’s satellite phone went unanswered, and the first Coast Guard crews on the scene discovered debris and an empty life raft.

A Coast Guard cutter that remained on the scene overnight was joined Tuesday morning by a fixed-wing aircraft, Petty Officer Amanda Myrick said. However, the crew could not be located, the Coast Guard said.

The search was hampered Monday by 6- to 8-foot (2- to 2.5-meter) seas and 35 mph (55 kph) winds, but weather conditions had improved Tuesday, Myrick said.

The owner, Rink Varian, had told the Bangor Daily News that the boat’s crew was experienced.

“This is a horrific accident,” he said.

The Emmy Rose was part of the Sustainable Harvest Sector fishing cooperative.

“I am holding out hope that the Coast Guard will be able to find these people,” cooperative manager Hank Soul told The Boston Globe before the search was called off.



More from WBUR

Listen Live