Search for missing fishermen in the hands of Curacao authorities
June 4, 2010
Search for missing fishermen in the hands of Curacao authorities

Search and rescue efforts for three missing Vincentian fishermen are now in the hands of regional authorities in Curacao.{{more}}

This was disclosed by Commander of the local Coast Guard, Brenton Cain, at a media briefing at the conference room of the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force earlier this week.

On May 24, Mark Dennie, of Rose Place, Walter “Kernel” Lynch, of Layou, and Abo Thomas, of Edinboro, set out to sea around 5:30 am as part of the annual Fisherman’s Day activities. All three were reported missing at about 8pm later the same day.

Cain told reporters judging from the length of time the men have been missing, there’s a strong possibility that the men and their 27-foot pirogue, “Jah Love”, may be headed towards the western Caribbean, hence the decision to hand over search co-ordination to Curacao on Friday, May 28.

Before matters were handed over to Curacao, Cain stated that the co-ordinating centre for search and rescue in Trinidad assisted by providing an aerial search on May 25. Cain explained that searches were carried out to the northwest of St Vincent.

The Regional Security System airwing made an air search between this country and Barbados.The Trinidad and Tobago airwing also made checks south of Grenada, while Grenadian Coastguard assisted with the search north of St Vincent.

Local airline SVG Air also made unsuccessful ariel searches between Grenada and St. Lucia on May 26.

Officials from the Fisheries Division said they visited Dennie’s Rose Place neighbourhood to ascertain from persons in the area if the trio may have indicated where they were headed, but that effort, the officials say, was met with conflicting reports.

It is also believed that none of the men on board carried any means of communication as Dennie had left his cellular phone in his vehicle.

“We are not jumping to any conclusions, but if they had a VHF radio or something, our search would have been made easier,” Cain stated.

Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police, Keith Miller, and Chief Fisheries Officer, Raymond Ryan, remain optimistic about the men’s rescue, despite the length of time which has elapsed since their disappearance.(KW)