Coast Guard suspends search for man overboard from cruise ship in Sitka Sound

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter

Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk File Photo

KODIAK, Alaska – The Coast Guard suspended its search Friday for a man reported overboard from the 780-foot cruise ship Amsterdam in Sitka Sound, Alaska.

Two Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews searched a total of 163-square miles in the Sitka Sound, from Cape Ommaney to Biorka Island and surrounding waters in efforts to locate the man.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau watchstanders received notification at 9 p.m., Thursday, from the Amsterdam reporting the man missing after he did not show up for his shift. The master was made aware of the missing man at 7:45 p.m. The Amsterdam crew made extensive searches of the vessel, but did not locate the crew member.

“It’s never an easy decision to suspend a search,” said Cmdr. Byron Hayes, Sector Juneau search and rescue mission coordinator. “Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of this man.”

Weather was reported as 45-mph winds, low visibility, 7-10 foot seas, a water temperature of 55 degrees and an air temperature of 62 degrees.

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