Coast Guard suspends search for 10 missing Cuban migrants near Key West

Coast Guard Cutter Kathleen Moore file photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Mark Barney

Coast Guard Cutter Kathleen Moore file photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Mark Barney

MIAMI — The Coast Guard suspended the search for 10 missing Cuban migrants approximately 16 miles south of Key West, Saturday, at 8 p.m., pending the development of new information.

Coast Guard, Navy, Air Force, Customs and Border Protection and Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission air and surface asset personnel conducted multiple search patterns for more than 123 hours. These searches covered approximately 8,864 square miles, which is almost the size of New Hampshire.

While on routine patrol, the Coast Guard Cutter Resolute crew spotted multiple people in the water and alerted Sector Key West watchstanders, Thursday, at approximately 1 p.m. The eight survivors reported they left Puerto de Mariel, Cuba, Sunday, and capsized sometime Wednesday evening and that there were still 10 people missing in the water. Two people were recovered deceased.

“The Coast Guard, partner Department of Defense and local agency crews searched continuously the past three days to locate the missing 10 people,” said Capt. Adam Chamie, Commander of Sector Key West. “The decision to suspend a search is always difficult and is made after careful consideration of all the facts. Our deepest condolences go out to the families and loved ones impacted by this tragedy.”

Coast Guard and partner agencies assets involved in the search include:

  • Coast Guard Station Key West 45-foot Response Boat–Medium
  • Coast Guard Cutter Resolute
  • Coast Guard Cutter Kathleen Moore
  • Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry and MH-65 Dolphin helicopter
  • Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and HC-130 Hercules aircraft
  • Coast Guard Auxiliary aircrew
  • A Naval Air Station Key West H-60 helicopter
  • Customs and Border Protection Air Marine Operation MH-60
  • Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission surface assetsPatrick Air Force Base C-130

If you have any information on this case, please reach out to the Sector Key West Command Center at 305-292-8727.

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