Coast Guard suspends search off Wilmington, says no vessels have been reported overdue

Some of the debris found by a helicopter crew from Air Station Elizabeth City on Feb. 11, 2020. [photo courtesy USCG]

The United States Coast Guard has suspended its search of the open ocean off the southeastern North Carolina coast that was prompted by an unregistered emergency radio beacon being activated and debris that was spotted Tuesday.

Coast Guard crews from Air Station Elizabeth City, the Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton and Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System vessels have searched approximately 2,663 square miles since Tuesday afternoon, according to a news release.

The unregistered Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon alert lead the Coast Guard to the debris approximately 126 miles southeast off Wilmington.

Patterns of the search conducted Feb. 11-13, 2020. [image courtesy USCG Petty Officer 3rd Class Ronald Hodges)

There were no additional signs of distress reported or vessels known to be overdue in the area.

“We would like to thank our maritime partners in AMVER who agreed to assist in this case,” said Lt. j.g. Victoria Moon.

“We ask that owners of EPIRB’s ensure they register their devices,” Moon said. “It allows us to quickly reach the owners in emergency situations and expedites search and rescue.”

If anyone believes they have information that can assist this case, Moon said they should call the District Five command center at 757-398-6231.

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Sam Walker is news director for OBXToday.com, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and Classic Rock 92.3. Reach him at sam@obxtoday.com

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