Jayapura, 14/4 (Jubi) – The search for 23 passengers who went missing in a boat accident off Serui-Mamberamo Raya were hampered by inadequate equipment and extreme weather, Regent Toni Tesar said.
“At least 23 of 29 passengers are still missing. However, we continue to coordinate with the Governor and the Navy to provide a bigger rescue boat. Until now we still can not find the missing persons because of the extreme weather and high waves,” he told reporters in Jayapura on Monday (14/4).
Soon after the news of the accident reached authorities, the local government contacted a rescue team to search for the victims using a small speedboat.
However, the waves were very high and while the equipment was limited.
“It is not true that the government is not being responsive because we called the rescue team on the night when it happened. And everything has been prepared the next day. We provided a small speed boat but the waves were very high and we had limited facilities,” the regent said.
Earlier, as reported in the official website of National SAR Office (http://www.basarnas.go.id), a motor boat capsized in the East Yapen Islands Sea (coordinates 01 51 56.88 S – 136 55 26.46 E) on Tuesday ( 8 / 4 ) at 16:00 Papua time. Biak SAR Office had the information on the accident from Serui SAR station. It was said that the motorboat was sailing from Serui to Baitanisa Village of Mamberamo. The rescue team of Serui led by the head of Biak SAR Office, Marsudi, went to Tanjung Kurudu on Friday afternoon to search the missing victims. (Jubi/Alex/rom)