26 Feb 2018
- By Bryan Manabat – [email protected] – Variety News Staff
THE Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services and the Department of Public Safety conducted a search-and-rescue operation for a tourist who went missing after being dragged into open water by a wave at Forbidden Island, late Friday afternoon.
DFEMS public information officer Derek Gersonde said the missing person is a 25-year-old male Korean tourist who was with three companions.
Gersonde said DFEMS units arrived on scene at 3:36 p.m. and conducted a cliffline search while DPS Boating Safety conducted a sea search in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard and a Navy helicopter from Guam.
By 6 p.m., Friday, Boating Safety and the Coast Guard called off the search due to low visibility.
The search was continued Saturday. As of Sunday afternoon, the victim had not been found yet.
DPS PIO Jackie Rae said on Friday, at 3:14 p.m., DPS Central received a call reporting a possible drowning at Forbidden Island. Once on the scene, officers spoke with a witness who said he, along with three friends, made their way down to the beach to take pictures.
The victim left the shore to take pictures on the rocks leading to the island when a large wave came in and knocked him down. Witnesses said they did not immediately recognize that the victim was in danger, until a second wave took him further out. The victim was able to hold on to a rock, but his friends were unable to reach him before a third wave pulled him under and out of sight, DPS said.
On Jan. 13, 2018, a Korean couple went missing while swimming in the waters off Forbidden Island. Only the body of the 30-year-old woman was recovered. Her husband was 32 years old.
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/102503-another-missing-tourist-at-forbidden-island