Search for Missing Teen Boaters Extended to Georgia
The search for two 14-year-old boys from South Florida who disappeared in the Atlantic Ocean on a fishing trip last week has been extended as far north as Savannah, Georgia, authorities said Tuesday.
Rescue teams have seen no signs of the boys since their boat was found capsized and empty near Daytona Beach, Florida, on Sunday, said U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Jon-Paul Rios.
“We haven’t stopped searching. There have been no gaps in the search,” Rios said.
The Coast Guard, which has been assisted by the U.S. Navy, state and local authorities and volunteers, has scoured more than 28,000 square nautical miles, Rios said, an area slightly larger than the state of Indiana.
Austin Stephanos and Perry Cohen were last seen on Friday buying fuel in Jupiter in South Florida, near their affluent hometown of Tequesta in Palm Beach County.
Their parents described the teens as experienced boaters and fishermen.
Their overturned 19-foot center console boat was found two days later 180 miles north of Jupiter and almost 80 miles east of the shoreline. One life vest was floating nearby.
Using drift models, the search has inched northward each day to Savannah, 365 miles from their launch point.
Joe Namath, the Hall of Fame former New York Jets quarterback and a neighbor of the boys, has offered a $100,000 reward to qualified searchers for the boys’ safe return.