Coast Guard suspends search for potential missing crew after owner comes forward
The U.S. Coast Guard has confirmed no one is in distress after the discovery of a small boat with nobody aboard prompted a search for potential missing crew.
According to a release Monday afternoon, the owner of the boat was located and told the Coast Guard it had drifted away, causing the search to be called off.
"We understand that accidents happen and appreciate the owner of the boat coming forward and letting us know that his boat drifted away," said Mike McNeil, command duty officer for the case. "Folks are reminded to double check that their boats are secure when not in use."
The boat was found adrift in waters east of Whittier sometime around 7:30 a.m. Monday, officials with the Coast Guard said in a release. Watchstanders in Anchorage worked to track down the owner of the boat, described as a 10-foot blue and gray Zodiak.
It was found adrift in Passage Canal and had cat food, shrimp possibly for bait, fishing gear, line and oars aboard.
"The Coast Guard launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Kodiak, a response boat crew from Station Valdez and an Auxiliary crew out of Whittier to search for potential persons in the water associated with the boat," the release stated.
The Coast Guard says no distress signal was reported. The boat doesn't have a motor and there aren't any identifying numbers on its hull.
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