Life jackets found in search for missing of Malaysia's boat accident

Agencies | Updated: 2017-02-03 17:56
KOTA KINABALU, Malaysia -- Two life jackets were found and a floating object was spotted as Malaysian authorities continued the search for the six remained missing in the boat accident off its Sabah state, officials said Friday.

The authorities have not yet known whether the two life jackets belong to the missing as there were no symbol or mark on them for identification, said Adam Aziz, chief of Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency in Kota Kinabalu, the state capital.

The two life jackets were picked up from two separate locations more than 60 nautical miles from the last known position of the sunken boat and had been sent to the police for identification, said Adam.

"Both are orange-colored and of the same pattern," he said.

Search personnel onboard a Malaysia air force C-130 has reported a floating object in the search area, and a vessel was dispatched to the location but has no findings so far, he added.

The search on Friday narrowed to an area of 2,990 square nautical miles, comparing with 3,900 square nautical miles in the past two days. Some 350 personnel and 21 assets including ships and aircrafts combed the waters near Malaysia and the neighboring Brunei.

The weather was good in the morning before turning bad later, hampered the search effort with lower visibility, said Adam.

He said the search would continue with more focus on the south, after taking into account the wind and current.

The catamaran, carrying over two dozen Chinese tourists and three crew, went down in turbulent waters while heading for the popular island of Mengalum on Jan. 28. Twenty-two people have been rescued but three Chinese tourists have been confirmed dead. Another five Chinese tourists and a crew member are still missing.

The rescued tourists are receiving treatments and are in stable conditions, officials from China's Consulate General in Kota Kinabalu told Xinhua.
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