SINGAPORE — A Singaporean man has been reported missing in the waters of the United States (US) after allegedly falling off the ship he was on Monday (20th June).
Muhammad Furqan Mohamed Rashid, 25 years old, was said to be undergoing qualification training to become a ship officer (COC3) before he was reported missing.
According to his friend, Muhammad Fariz, who posted a Facebook post on Wednesday (21st June), the search and rescue efforts are in full swing, but the vastness of the ocean has made the task arduous and complex.
Muhammad Fariz is seeking support and prayers from the public for his friend.
“Let us join hands and hearts, irrespective of our backgrounds or beliefs, as we send waves of love, hope, and positive energy to guide my friend back to safety.”
Muhammad Furqan’s sister, Nur’Afifah Mohamed Rashid, also posted a note on Facebook regarding the incident.
“I Humbly request to make doa for my brother Muhammad Furqan Bin Mohamed Rashid as he was reported to have fallen off his vessel at US waters and still missing.”
U.S Coast Guard suspended the search on 21 June
According to a statement issued by the U.S Coast Guard on 20 June, they were conducting a search for an individual who fell overboard from a bulk carrier vessel located 14 miles (22km) off the coast of Point Conception, California.
The statement noted that at approximately 5 a.m. that day, Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles – Long Beach Command Center watchstanders received a report of a crewmember who went overboard from the African Cardinal, a bulk carrier vessel.
The watchstanders immediately issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast (UMIB) to communicate the urgency of the situation.
A rescue helicopter was deployed from Forward Operating Base Point Mugu, while a small boat crew departed from Coast Guard Station Channel Islands. Additionally, the Coast Guard Cutter Robert Ward was redirected to join the search for the missing crew member.
However, in a subsequent update on Wednesday (21 June), Chief Warrant Officer John Rose, search and rescue mission coordinator at Sector Los Angeles/Long Beach, announced that they had to suspend its active search Tuesday evening for the missing crewmember.
“We extend our deepest sympathies to this crewmember’s friends and family,” said John Rose.
“The decision to suspend an active search is never easy and is only made after exhaustive efforts to find the missing person.”
The U.S. Coast Guard conducted thorough searches by air and sea for nearly 15 hours, covering an area of over 200 square nautical miles.
As of now, there is no information available regarding the potential continuation of the search and rescue efforts.