The search for a lone fisherman who went missing off Green Head to first light was called off due to inappropriate weather, with police admitting they had “serious concerns” for the 46-year-old’s fisherman.
Ian Gray was reported missing around 6.20pm on Sunday after he failed to return home from his hunting trip at 4pm as expected.
Mr. Gray’s car and boat trailer remained at the slope of the boat and his family members did not hear from him.
A major land, air and sea rescue operation was launched in an attempt to find Mr. Gray, but had to be called off at 5 pm due to “bad weather”.
The search is set to begin in first light on Tuesday, with the participation of local volunteer marine rescue vessels, a Fisheries Department boat, an air wing and drones for Western Australian Police, a rescue helicopter and an Australian Maritime Safety Authority aircraft.
State emergency services volunteers, Western Australian Police’s Mounted Division and local police officers also tour the beach.
Police released a photo of Mr. Gray as well as the white boat he was driving.
John Munday, acting inspector for the Gascoigne Midwest region, said police had “serious concerns” about Mr Gray, who was from Perth but has family in Green Head, about 250 kilometers north of the capital.
to examine. Munday said the weather was “unfavorable for research” due to the large swell.
“It is clearly a matter of concern that we were not able to find the ship or Mr. Gray last night with the AMSA aircraft or today during the search,” he said.
“Every minute that goes by raises our concerns because he is alone. We are not sure exactly what safety equipment he has on board.
“The family told us he has basic safety equipment, so we hope he’s got life jackets and flashlights and all that stuff, but he’s in a reasonably small ship. It’s a 4.2m open boat…so with this large, oversized flow we have great concerns for Mr. Gray”.
to examine. Munday said he has not received any information that the EPIRB device has been activated.
“Mr. Gray knows the area very well, he has family in Green Head and he has fished this spot regularly, so we are relieved by the fact that he knows the area well but we need to find him or find the ship,” he said.
to examine. Munday said Mr. Gray’s family was very concerned.
“They just want answers and that’s what we really want to do, we want to try and provide a quick fix on this so they can move forward and hopefully find Mr. Gray alive,” he said.
The search is the second to be launched in the region, following a report that a crew member of the Chinese bulk carrier fell into the sea about 11.5 kilometers off the coast of Geraldton at 6.40pm on Sunday.
Remarkably, the man was found alive 14 hours later, 10 kilometers off the coast of Aokaji by a search ship around 8.40 am on Monday.
In Green Head, Howard Greensell, a local, said he saw Mr. Gray early on a Sunday morning before he set off fishing.
“I live near the corner,” he said, “and I saw him pass somewhere around 8:30 in the morning.”
“I thought (what) the hell he would hunt for.
“I went for a walk up to the lookout point and you could see his boat there, white canoe, side by side, maybe a few miles away. There’s probably only 30 meters of water far away.”
Mr Grinsell said conditions on Sunday were “fairly unforgiving”.
“(There was) a lot of bloating,” he said. “(It wasn’t) ideal to go fishing alone.”
He said the town was sticking together because the residents “take care of each other here.”
“You have to have a population of 300,” he said.