HM Coastguard jammed a search and rescue helicopter after receiving a distress beacon from fishing vessel Joanna C at 6 a.m.
Two crew members of a fishing boat previously attacked during the Channel Scallop War were missing on Saturday evening after the vessel sank
HM Coastguard jammed a search and rescue helicopter after receiving a distress beacon from fishing boat Joanna C at 6 a.m.
The beacon signal put the ship three nautical miles off Seaford, near Newhaven
A man believed to be the skipper of the boat was rescued after being found hanging from a buoy
Two other crewmembers have still not been found after a desperate search of the coastguard and two RNLI lifeboats
Piers Stanbury, HM Coast Guard Controller, said: « Fortunately one of the three people on board at the time of the sinking was removed from the water and brought ashore by the RNLI lifeboat from Newhaven, but the intensive air and sea search for both the missing crew continues
« Debris has been located near the EPIRB alert location, but no liferaft has yet been found »
The search for the other two crew members was called off around 11 p.m. and is expected to resume at first light on Sunday
Chris Thomas, Deputy Director of HM Coastguard, said: « Sadly two other crew members have not yet been located and all our hearts go out to their families and friends
« This is a testament to the local maritime community that HM Coastguard was so admirably supported throughout the day by nearby vessels and local fishing communities who joined us in force and went to great lengths to locate their colleagues during research
« At one point, Coast Guard coordinators described tracking 14 vessels covering the search plane area, including the two RNLI all-weather lifeboats at sea »
The 45-foot scallop fishing vessel, owned by Derek Meredith and skippered by Nathan Clark, was bombarded with flares and rocks in an ugly standoff with French fishermen in 2018
M Meredith called on the military to intervene after the altercation which nearly sank two of her boats and left her crew in dire straits
It came after a similar attack in 2015 when the passengers of the Joanna C were bombarded with iron chains and surrounded by 20 French boats
The ongoing fishing conflict known as the ‘scallop war’ escalated last month when French trawlers attacked British boats with flares and frying pans
British vessels are allowed to fish in the scallop-rich waters of the English Channel, a bone of contention with French fishermen who accuse them of depleting stocks
English fishermen were driven from the area after their French counterparts threw smoke bombs and hurled insults at them
Joanna C underwent a complete makeover last year after an engine failure and she has been remodeled to allow her to stay at sea for up to a week
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East Sussex, fishing boat, Newhaven
EbeneInfo – GB – Two crew members missing after the fishing boat sank
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