Salem Radio Network News Monday, May 16, 2022


U.S. Coast Guard finds one body in search for missing after boat capsizes off Florida

By Brian Ellsworth

MIAMI (Reuters) – The U.S. Coast Guard said on Wednesday that rescue teams have found one body in their search for 39 people reported missing after their boat capsized in the Atlantic Ocean off Florida in what is being called a human smuggling attempt gone awry.

U.S. Coast Guard Commander Jo-Ann Burdian said during a news conference that the search for survivors would continue throughout the day, a day after a good Samaritan found a man perched on the mostly submerged hull of the overturned boat and rescued him.

The good Samaritan alerted the Coast Guard, which dispatched rescue vessels and aircraft to look for more victims. The survivor told authorities he had left the Bahamas’ Bimini islands, about 50 miles (80 km) east of Miami, in a boat with 39 other people on Saturday night, the Coast Guard said in a statement posted online.

According to the survivor, the group’s vessel capsized on Sunday morning when it hit rough weather about 45 miles (72 km) east of Fort Pierce Inlet, off Florida’s Atlantic coast about midway between Miami and Cape Canaveral, but no one was wearing a life jacket, the Coast Guard said.

The survivor was taken to a hospital for treatment of dehydration and sun exposure.

The accident coincided with a small-craft advisory posted in the area, with steady winds clocked at up to 23 miles (37 km) per hour and 9-foot (3-meter) seas, according to the Coast Guard.

Through Wednesday morning, Coast Guard cutter crews, helicopter teams, search planes and a U.S. Navy air crew crisscrossed an area spanning more than 1,300 square miles (3,367 square km), about the size of Rhode Island, between Bimini and Fort Pierce Inlet, the statement said.

The agency said in an earlier Twitter message that the incident was under investigation as “a suspected human smuggling venture.” However, the nationalities of those who were aboard the vessel has yet to be determined, a Coast Guard spokesperson, Petty Officer Jose Hernandez, said.

(Reporting by Brian Ellsworth in Miami; additional reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Chicago)


Editorial Cartoons

View More »

Michael Ramirez
Tue, May 10, 2022