Coast Guard, Navy and international partners continue search for 15 missing mariners

14th Coast Guard District NewsApra Harbor, GUAM – The Coast Guard, Navy and international partners continue searching for a missing, white 28-foot skiff with 15 passengers aboard in the vicinity between Chuuk State and Ruo Island, Thursday.

Passengers aboard include six children and nine adults. It was reported that the group consists of 10 males and five females, ages ranging between four and 59 years old. The vessel reportedly has three drums of gasoline, food, and two ice chests filled with meat and miscellaneous items.

The crew aboard Coast Guard Cutter Assateague traveled 552 miles from Guam to reach the search area where aircraft from both the Coast Guard and Navy have been searching since early Wednesday morning.

Aircrews aboard an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, Oahu, Hawaii, along with a U.S. Navy P-3 Orion long-range search aircraft from Okinawa, Japan, have been searching the area since Wednesday.

Crews have searched for approximately 35 hours and have scoured a search area of 10,702 square miles.

Coast Guard Sector Guam personnel utilized the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue system to identify commercial vessels in the area that could assist with the search. The 750-foot Norwegian cargo ship Höegh Asia, a participating member of the AMVER program, responded to the request for assistance.

Local fishermen throughout the region have taken to the water to help.

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