Coast Guard finds 1 body from US cargo ship caught in hurricane

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The latest on the search for a U.S. cargo ship carrying 33 people that has been missing since it encountered high winds and heavy seas from Hurricane Joaquin. All times local:

10:15 a.m.

The Coast Guard says it found the body of one crew member from a U.S.-based cargo ship that sank during a hurricane off the Bahamas.

Capt. Mark Fedor said Monday that an airborne crew spotted several survival suits floating amid debris from the El Faro. Most were empty but one had a body. A helicopter crew confirmed the person was dead but had to leave the body behind to continue the search for possible survivors.

Coast Guard cutters and aircraft and a U.S. plane continued searching the Atlantic Ocean for the missing crew. The ship’s owners say it carried more than enough lifeboats and rafts for the crew.

Fedor also says crews found one of two lifeboats from El Faro, but it had no people or signs of life. He says the ship had two lifeboats, and each can hold 43 people.

9:40 a.m.

The Coast Guard says a ship that went missing during a hurricane off the Bahamas sank, but the search continues for the 33 people on board.

Chief Petty Jon-Paul Rios says the Coast Guard and the ship’s owner concluded Monday that the 790-foot container ship El Faro sank after encountering Hurricane Joaquin’s high winds and heavy seas last week.

Rios says Coast Guard cutters and aircraft and a U.S. plane continued searching the Atlantic Ocean for the missing crew. The ship’s owners say it carried more than enough lifeboats and rafts for the crew.

Earlier, a container, pieces of another container and a life ring from the El Faro was recovered. An oil sheen also was spotted.

8:30 a.m.

The Coast Guard is beginning its fifth day of searching near the Bahamas for a U.S. cargo ship carrying 33 people missing since it encountered Hurricane Joaquin.

Coast Guard Chief Petty Bobby Nash said Monday that two cutters continued searching overnight for the 790-foot El Faro, and a C-130 aircraft was launched at dawn. Nash said a third cutter was on its way.

Searchers have found debris and clues but no definitive word on the fate of the vessel or those on board.

The vessel’s owner said a container that appears to have come from the ship was found and a debris field was found that included what appeared to be pieces of container. Searchers also spotted an oil sheen and found a life ring from the El Faro.

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