Coast Guard Suspends Search for Lost Fisherman

Jay Barrett/KMXT

The Coast Guard suspended the search for a missing crewman from the 58-foot fishing vessel Advantage near Kodiak Island Friday night at 8:40 p.m.
The search lasted for more than 18 hours and covered approximately 1,400 square miles, according to Coast Guard spokeswoman Sara Francis. She said the Advantage apparently went down quickly around midnight Friday. Coast Guard watch-standers in Juneau received an emergency satellite alert from the vessel just after midnight. After being unable to contact the Advantage via radio, an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Air Station Kodiak was dispatched to the scene and hoisted three crewmembers from a life raft. None were wearing survival suits and they were transported to Kodiak for treatment of hypothermia.
The skipper, Leif Bolan, later died. The other two rescued crewmembers are reportedly recovering.
The Jayhawk and an HC-130 Hercules took turns searching the area of the sinking throughout the day but were unable to locate the missing crewman, identified as Jaime Gallega.
Captain Gregory Sanial, chief of response for the Coast Guard 17th District said, “Suspending a search is one of the most difficult decisions we have to make.”
Search crews reported seas of two to three-feet and a water temperature of approximately 52 degrees Fahrenheit.
The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of the sinking.

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