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US Coast Guard suspends search for missing El Faro

US Coast Guard suspends search for missing El Faro
The search for the missing ro-ro cargo ship El Faro, believed to have sunk, has been called off late on Wednesday, the US Coast Guard (USCG) announced.

“Any decision to end a search is painful,” USCG captain Mark Fedor was reported saying, adding that they “did all they could in this search effort.”

The El Faro was enroute from Jacksonville to San Juan, Puerto Rico when it was caught in Hurricane Joaquin and last heard from on 1 October. The ship was carrying 33 people and one has been confirmed dead while the rest could not be found.

Anthony Chiarello, president of TOTE Maritime, which owns the vessel, said: “While the search might be over, our support and commitment to the families and loved ones and friends of those onboard has not ended nor will it.”

The owner has said that El Faro’s main propulsion failed when it was caught in the storm, leaving it stranded.

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has launched a ‘Go-Team’ to Jacksonville to start a probe into the loss of the ship.