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Search for missing Penghu fishing boat continues

2017/11/19 18:44:32

Photo courtesy of Penghu Coast guard

Taipei, Nov. 19 (CNA) Coast Guard vessels continue to search for a fishing boat registered on the offshore island of Penghu County that has been missing since Nov. 13, Hung Pei-lun (洪悖論), head of the Penghu Coast Guard, said Sunday.

The Hsin Chun Yi No. 6 (新春億6號) , with its Taiwanese captain and one Indonesian crew mate, left Penghu's westernmost Huayu Islet to go fishing at 0:30 a.m. Nov. 13, but disappeared from radar screens less than one hour later at about 1:20 a.m. It was last seen encountering a commercial ship about 4 nautical miles (7.41 kilometers) southwest of Penghu's Mao Islet.

The fishing boat could have clashed with the commercial ship and the Coastal Patrol Directorate General is continuing to contact all commercial ships that passed through the area, Hung added.

With the fishing boat out of contact for six days, longer than a standard fishing trip of about 4-5 days, and the strong gusty winds near Penghu, the family of the captain reported the case to coastal authorities on Saturday, according to Hung.

Hung said the Penghu Coast Guard has dispatched two frigates, two cutters and asked the Navy to send vessels to assist in the search for the missing fishing boat, but nothing has been found so far.

(By Chen Chi-ching and Evelyn Kao)