• April 19, 2024

12 missing still after boat capsizes in Gulf of Mexico

Families and friends were hoping Thursday as divers prepared to search for 12 people missing on a commercial boat capsized in thundering winds and heavy seas two days ago before Louisiana.

Boats and planes have combed part of the Gulf of Mexico the size of Rhode Islands since the boat rolled and flipped south of Port Fourchon, a base for the U.S. oil and gas industry, Tuesday afternoon. Part of the boat remained above the surface on Thursday.

“A ship that capsized with the potential of people trapped inside. There are many dynamic aspects to consider,” said Jonathan Lally, Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class. “We don’t have a lot of information about where they are.”

The Coast Guard said if weather permits, divers would inspect the 129-foot Seacor Power lift boat. The winds lashed up to 90 miles per hour and the waves hit 9 feet when the water overpowered the lift boat – also known as the jackup rig for the retractable legs that raised the deck above the water.

Six people were saved on Tuesday; A body was recovered on Wednesday. Some family members hoped that loved ones were trapped in air pockets.

Marion Cuyler, the fiancée of crane operator Chaz Morales, said she spoke to him shortly before the tragedy.

“He said they jerked off and wanted to go and I think the weather is too bad. You have to come home,” she said. “And he says I wish I could.”

“Pray for the Lost”: Corpse found, 12 missing after the boat capsized in stormy seas

Gregory Walcott’s family, 62, related KATC TV that he was on the boat. The family has not heard of his fate. Walcott worked on the oil rigs for two decades, his niece said.

“We have no words. It’s just … it’s like a bomb that went off without notice,” his niece Crystle Randle told the TV station. “We’re all in shock right now. We just remain in good faith that he will be found alive.”

Dylan Daspit family members told KATC that he was on the boat too.

“Everyone prays for a miracle,” his wife, Hannah Coleman, told Daspit. “He has to come home to his family. We can’t live without him. “

Will Watson, commander of the New Orleans Coast Guard sector, did not want to give up hope that after more than 40 hours of searching late Wednesday, survivors would be found. The massive 1,440 square miles effort included more than a dozen authorized search boats and “Good Samaritan” boats, five airplanes and three helicopters.

“When it comes to search and rescue, every case is dynamic and no individual case is the same as the next,” he said. “It is always our hope to bring these people back safely and bring them together with their friends and families.”

The Coast Guard issued an urgent marine briefing Tuesday after being alerted that the boat was in distress. The cutter Glenn Harris, a 154-foot rescue ship, arrived on site within 30 minutes and pulled a person out of the capsized ship, the agency said. Another Coast Guard boat rescued a man, and area boaters pulled four more to safety.

Seacor Marine, who owned the boat, issued a statement saying it is working with the Coast Guard and local authorities to find “our valued team members and partners”.

“We would like to thank the US Coast Guard and the ships of the Good Samaritan for their immediate response and the courageous individuals who have continued to support our search and rescue efforts,” the statement said. “Our hearts and prayers go out to everyone involved.”

Cuyler was unmoved.

“I mean they shouldn’t have gone out,” she said. “There is no way. You should have waited at least 12 hours.”

Contributor: The Associated Press


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