KUCHING: Search and rescue (SAR) teams have expanded their operation areas for five anglers reported missing since Oct 1, to 483.29 square nautical miles.
A spokesman for the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) Sarawak disclosed that the search had concentrated in areas about 15 nautical miles off the coast today (Oct 8).
The search involving a total of 110 personnel, was divided into four sectors namely in the waters of Besi Buruk, Tanjung Sipang, Karang Berumput, Tukun Bass and around Pulau Lakei.
Overall, the SAR operations have covered a total of 2,660.81 square nautical miles in six days of searching.
“For the search at sea, KM Sri Aman and Maritime Kilat 35 boats are assisted by assets from the Marine Police Force, Sarawak Fire Department, Sarawak Marine Fisheries Department, Sarawak Coast Guard and the Civil Defence Force (APM).
“Eight fishing boats from the maritime community also participated in the search and they focused on the east side of the Besi Buruk waters,” the spokesman said.
Two helicopters – MI-171 (Miri Fire Department) and AS355N (Police Air Unit) assisted in the air search.
As at press time, rescuers have yet to find any new clue pertaining to the victims’ whereabouts.
The weather was reported to be windy with wind speeds of 40 to 50km per hour and waves around 2.5 to 3.5m high today.
The five missing anglers are identified as Khamizan Saidi, 40 (boat skipper); Yap Tze Kang, 41; Ng Ching Hui, 36; Leo Dy Lee Jiann Tarn, 35; and Christopher Teo, 32.
All of them were reported missing after they did not return from their fishing activity near Karang Berumput, Tukun Bass in Santubong waters.