Coast Guard covers 180 square miles in search for missing diver off Cape Fear coast is your source for free news and information in the Wilmington area.

U.S. Coast Guard Sector North Carolina Seal
U.S. Coast Guard Sector North Carolina Seal

WILMINGTON – The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for a 48-year-old diver who went missing 30 miles off the Cape Fear Coast after his equipment reportedly malfunctioned.

Crews covered 180 square miles during the more than 29-hour search for the man. The search was suspended at about 1:40 p.m. Friday, according to a notice from U.S. Coast Guard. It had begun at about 10:50 a.m. on Thursday, when the Coast Guard was notified a diver from the vessel Atlantis experienced an equipment failure and did not resurface from the water.

The Coast Guard dispatched a 47-foot life boat from Station Oak Island, a 45-foot response boat from Station Wrightsville Beach, and a MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Air Station Elizabeth City during the search. The search also involved the 110-foot Coast Guard Cutter Cushing and 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Ibis.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the missing diver. Suspending a search effort is always one of our most difficult decisions,” Cmdr. Matt Moorlag, Chief of Response at Coast Guard Sector North Carolina, said.