The U.S. Coast Guard deployed an aircrew today from Honolulu to aid in a search for two missing mariners off the coast of Nonouti Island of Kiribati, about 1,930 miles from Hawaii.
The mariners have been missing since September and were last seen leaving the sound end of Nonouti Island in a 15-foot aluminum skiff for a 25-mile trip to Tabiteuea.
An Air Station Barbers Point HC-130 Hercules aircrew was sent to assist the Joint Rescue Coordination Center Fiji in the search for the mariners.
“One of our largest challenges when conducting search and rescue missions in the Pacific is the shear size of the search area,” said Michael Cobb, command duty officer for JRCC, in a statement. “Because of this challenge we often work closely with our partners in joint responses. It’s through coordination with local, regional, and international partners we are able to cover more ground and increase our chances of saving a life.”