Search Suspended for 2 Miami Men of Dry Tortugas

MIAMI – The Coast Guard suspended its search for two Florida men at 9:13 p.m. yesterday, ending a massive search that began after the pair’s 28-foot vessel reportedly became disabled about 27 miles southwest of Dry Tortugas, Fla., Monday afternoon.

Carlos Barrios and Maisel Abreu, 31, both Miami residents, were reported to have departed from Naples, Fla., sometime Sunday. One of the men called a family member using a satellite phone at around 2 p.m. Monday and reported they could only use one of two engines, were running low on fuel and were trying to reach the Dry Tortugas for assistance. A family member called the Coast Guard around 8 p.m. to report that they had lost communications with the two men.

The Coast Guard immediately diverted a Coast Guard C-130 Hercules aircraft already flying over the Florida Straits and launched the Coast Guard Cutter Chandeleur to search the waters near the last known position of the two men. The owner of the vessel reported that flares and personal flotation devices were on board, but the vessel was not equipped with a VHF radio or an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB).

The Coast Guard coordinated a massive, multi-agency search in the Florida Straits during the last two days, including aircraft from Coast Guard Air Stations Miami and Clearwater, Fla., U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Moody Air Force Base as well as the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Dolphin. Combined, the aircraft and vessels searched more than 9,000 square miles. Despite the aggressive search and significant number of assets used in the search, the vessel, Barrios and Abreu all remain missing.

The Cutter Chandeleur is a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in Miami.

The Cutter Dolphin is a 87-foot patrol boat homeported in Miami.

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