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Side view of cruise ship Carnival Magic docked at port Grand Turk on the blue sky background

Photo: NAN728/Shutterstock

Coast Guard Suspends Search For Overboard Cruise Ship Passenger Off Florida

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 5398
June 2, 2023

The U.S. Coast Guard suspended the search for a missing 35-year-old man who went overboard from a cruise ship 186 miles east of Jacksonville, Florida.

Missing is Ronnie Peale.

Coast Guard crews searched more than 5,171 square miles and 60 hours.

Carnival Cruise Lines personnel contacted Coast Guard watchstanders at 6:36 p.m., Monday, reporting that a passenger fell off the cruise ship Carnival Magic and entered the water. The search was suspended Wednesday night.

Coast Guard watchstanders launched air crews and diverted the USCGC Escanaba (WMEC 907) to conduct search and rescue efforts from the air and on the water. U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the region also assisted in the search efforts.

Peale was traveling with his fiancé when the incident took place. The woman told media they were on their first cruise together. A spokesperson for Carnival told media that a review of CCTV footage showed Peale fell overboard after leaning over the railing on his balcony at approximately 4:10 a.m. Monday morning.

“The Seventh Coast Guard District dispatched multiple search and rescue assets as soon as we were notified of the missing person. Our command center watchstanders provided search patterns to cutter crews and air crews who actively searched from Monday through Wednesday evening,” said Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Hooper, Coast Guard District Seven search and rescue mission coordinator. “The decision to suspend the active search efforts pending further development is never one we take lightly. We offer our most sincere condolences to Mr. Peale’s family and friends.”

The incident comes after a recent high school graduate went missing near Nassau, Bahamas last week after apparently jumping overboard from a sunset cruise on a dare. A haunting video which has since gone viral shows the man, identified as 18-year-old Cameron Robbins, after he entered the water next to the pirate-themed charter vessel Blackbeard’s Revenge in darkness as others on board watched on.

The Royal Bahamas Defence Force alerted the U.S. Coast Guard District Seven watchstanders of the incident at 11:30 p.m. last Wednesday. Coast Guard crews searched more than 325 square miles before the Royal Bahamas Defence Force suspended the search on Friday night.

According to CruiseJunkie.com’s man overboard tracker, there have 381 cases of man overboard incidents in the cruise and passenger vessel industry since the year 2000.

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