Coast Guard Suspends Searches for Missing Crewman

MS Grand Princess. Photo (c) Princess Cruises
MS Grand Princess. Photo (c) Princess Cruises

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended the searches for two missing crewmembers reported to have fallen overboard from a tanker and a cruise ship in two separate incidents in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Hawaii, respectively.

As gCaptain reported previously, a search got underway Tuesday for a crewmember of the Grand Princess cruise who was reported to have fallen overboard approximately 1,133 miles northeast of Hilo, Hawaii, late Monday night.

The Coast Guard then notified late Wednesday that the search had been suspended. The search covered an area of more than 4,900 square miles and involved two coast guard airplane crews, an AMVER participating containership and the Grand Princess’s sister ship, Star Princess.

In the Gulf of Mexico, the Coast Guard also notified Wednesday that it had suspended its search for an Indian tanker crewman reported missing near Southwest Pass in Louisiana.

The Coast Guard says that on Tuesday it received a report from the 598-foot Rainbow Quest that a crewman, Ram Mohan Singh, 25, was missing after an 8 a.m. muster. The Hong Kong-flagged ship conducted sweeps of the vessel with negative results and no life jackets were reported missing. Singh was last seen Monday at 9 p.m. wearing an orange jump suit.

The Coast Guard says that crews searched for 44 hours in a search area of 1,179 square miles in an effort to locate Singh, but the search turned up empty. Involved in that search was a coast guard airplane crews, four helicopter crews, two 45-foot Response Boat – Medium crews and a crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Pelican.

“Suspending a search is always an incredibly difficult decision to make,” said Lt. Justin Gear, a command duty officer of the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center. “It’s done with much deliberation and after a concerted effort to ensure that the Coast Guard has conducted a thorough search and saturated all probable locations for a survivor. We offer our thoughts and prayers to the family and loved ones.”