Local News

Coast Guard suspends search for missing fishermen in Pamlico Sound

Posted January 9, 2020 2:07 p.m. EST
Updated January 9, 2020 2:24 p.m. EST

The view from onboard the Oceania research vessel on the Baltic Sea on Nov. 20, 2019. The Baltic is one of the most polluted seas in the world. (Andrea Mantovani/The New York Times)

— The Coast Guard on Thursday suspended its search for two people who have been missing since a commercial fishing vessel capsized in the Pamlico Sound on Tuesday.

The Coast Guard’s Fifth District command center received a distress signal Tuesday night from an emergency position-indicating radio beacon registered to fishing vessel Papa’s Girl.

Two of the four crew members were pulled from the water by Coast Guard rescue crews and were taken by helicopter to Sentara Albemarle Medical Center in Elizabeth City. One of them later died.

The Coast Guard, the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission and the North Carolina Marine Patrol searched approximately 1,170 square miles for the other two crew members, authorities said.

“The marine environment is a dangerous place to work because of the cold water, rough seas and high winds,” Rear Adm. Keith Smith, commander of the Fifth District, said in a statement. "At this point, we’ve decided to suspend further search efforts for the two missing mariners, pending further information. Our thoughts are with the families and we are very grateful to the master of the vessel, whose [emergency radio beacon] saved the life of the survivor."

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