The U.S. Coast Guard announced Monday it will suspend its search at sunset for the eight crew members who remain lost at sea after Louisiana platform vessel Seacor Power capsized during a storm last week.
What are the details?
The 129-foot commercial lift boat set off from Port Fourchon on Tuesday afternoon and flipped over with 19 people on board after being caught in a storm with winds upward of 90 mph.
Six survivors were rescued as the Coast Guard and several good Samaritans jumped into action after receiving distress calls about the ship. The bodies of five others have also been recovered.
“We extend our appreciation to everyone who volunteered to assist during the search effort,” Capt. Will Watson, commander of Coast Guard Sector New Orleans, said during a news conference Monday, according to NBC News.
“Suspending a search is one of the toughest decisions the Coast Guard has to make,” he continued. “Our crews searched continuously over the past six days with the hope of bringing the missing crew members home to their loved ones.”
Watson explained that the Coast Guard has searched more than 9,200 square nautical miles with a total search time of 175 hours, praising the tremendous outpouring of support from volunteers who assisted in the effort from both the sea and air.
At this point, Watson said, the focus will now shift to the National Transportation Board’s investigation into the “hows and whys of what happened here.”
“We just came here from talking to the families. Told them what I’m telling you all now. There was a lot of hugging and a lot of crying. There was a lot of sadness and grief. But there was also a lot of hope and a lot of faith, still. I just want to say to all those folks, our deepest sympathies extend to you all.”
Coast Guard will suspend Seacor rescue operation Monday evening
Fox News reported that Seacor Marine, which owns the vessel, would still continue its dive and response operations.