U.S. Coast Guard Searching For Missing Man

Written by Reefwalker ondocument.write(localTime('Apr 5, 2008 7:40 GMT')) Apr-5-08 12:40am
April 04, 2008U.S. Coast Guard|by LT Marcus Hirschberg
GUAM - Rescue units from the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, Guam Police Department, and Guam Fire Department are searching Hagatna Boat Basin for a man who has been missing since just before 6 a.m. April 4.
The U.S. Coast Guard Captain of the Port, Guam, has secured all vessel traffic in and out of Hagatna Boat Basin. Mariners are advised to stay clear of all search vessels.

A small tender boat operating with the tug boat June T capsized as it crossed breaking surf at the entrance to Hagatna Boat Basin earlier today. Two people were on board. One was recovered safely while the other remains missing.

Units currently searching include boats and jet-skis from the Coast Guard, GPD, GFD and a helicopter from the U.S. Navy's Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 25.

The search is being coordinated by Coast Guard Sector Guam's Command Center under the direction of Capt. Bill Marhoffer, the Coast Guard Captain of the Port and the search and rescue mission coordinator.
Current surf conditions at the entrance to the boat basin pose a challenge for the search vessels, said Lt. Marcus Hirshberg, Sector Guam Command Center supervisor.

The following is a photo taken of onlookers and Coast Guard personnel standing near the boat accident site. The helicopter in the background is conducting aerial search patterns.

This was an unfornate incident the Guam Pacific Daily News reported that the captain was not a swimmer and the occupants did not have vests readily available. The photograph below is of the vessel after the incident and within the marina. Both photos were taken by M. Watanabe.

The high surf in the area was caused by a storm that generated East of Japan. Surf picked up to an average height of ten to twelve feet along the reefs and higher in some areas. I went out along with other rescuers as soon as I heard the news. The wind and the ocean swells brought in a lot of manmade and natural debris causing an obstacle course while conducting search patterns with R.W.C.'s (rescue water craft). All the rescue workers are hoping for better weather to continue the search.