TANJUNG MANIS: The search radius of a search and rescue (SAR) operation for a 26-year-old fisherman, who was reported missing after he allegedly fell into the sea last Sunday, has been expanded with the assistance of another Maritime ship yesterday (Nov 24).
As at press time, rescue agencies have yet to locate any new lead on the location of Hendry Belaja (nicknamed Boy).
A spokesman from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) Sarawak said the search radius had been expanded up to 105.45sq nautical miles involving 67 personnel from the Fire Department, Marine Police and Civil Defence Force (APM).
Another Maritime ship – KM Cekal, has been mobilised together with KM Tabah and Marine Police PA2 Boat to concentrate their search at sea around the waters of Pulau Bruit to Belawai.
Meanwhile, the Fire Department carried out the search along the coast of Belawai to Tanjung and APM will carry out their search along the coast of Belawai to Kuala Paloh.
Overall, the total search area on the fourth day of the operation was 258.2sq nautical miles.
It was reported that the direction of the wind is from the northeast with wind speeds from 20 to 30km per hour and waves around 1m to 1.5m high.
On Nov 20, the victim was believed to have fallen into the sea after one of the crew members saw him carrying a buoy to the back of the vessel at about 8pm.
It was around 4am the next day when they were about to start their fishing operation that they realised the victim was nowhere to be found.
An initial search party was conducted but to no avail, thus prompting the crew to lodge a police report for further assistance.