May 17, 2021

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2 more unresponsive crew recovered after Louisiana ship capsizing – NBC News

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Commercial divers on Friday recovered two more unresponsive crew members from the scene of a lift boat that capsized off the Louisiana coast this week, the Coast Guard said.

Nine people are still missing in the disaster involving the 129-foot vessel.

“Our deepest sympathy goes out to the family, friends and loved ones of everyone involved in this tragic incident,” Capt. Will Watson, commander of Coast Guard Sector New Orleans, said in a statement.

“We are using every asset available to us to continue our search efforts,” he said.

The Coast Guard said it does not declare someone deceased. A message with the Lafourche Parish Coroner’s Office was not immediately returned Friday night.

The ship, the Seacor Power, capsized amid high winds and seas Tuesday afternoon with 19 people aboard. Six people were rescued the day of the accident, four by good Samaritan boat crews who responded to a Coast Guard broadcast, officials said.

The bodies of two people were recovered Wednesday and Thursday, officials said. David Ledet, 63, of Thibodaux, was found Wednesday and Ernest Williams, 69, of Arnaudville, was recovered Thursday, according to the Coast Guard and coroner.

“Right now, we’re hoping for a miracle,” said Steven Walcott, brother of missing worker Gregory Walcott, according to The Associated Press.

A Coast Guard Station Grand Isle boat crew heading toward a capsized 175-foot commercial lift boat April 13, 2021 searching for people in the water 8 miles south of Grand Isle, La.US Coast Guard / AFP – Getty Images

Officials have said that it’s possible survivors could still be on the ship in air pockets. Divers at the vessel knocked on the hull Thursday and heard no response, the Coast Guard said, and divers returned Friday.

The ship capsized around 8 miles south of Port Fourchon, the Coast Guard has said. It received an emergency position indicating radio beacon notification around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday of a vessel in distress.

Watson has said that there were winds of around 80 to 90 mph at the time, with 7- to 9-foot seas. The ship is overturned on its side partially submerged and grounded in around 55 feet of water, he said.

The Seacor Power has three 250-foot-long legs that are jacked down to the sea floor, and they are used to raise the ship up to work on offshore platforms and rigs, Todd Michel, a senior marine inspector for the Coast Guard in New Orleans, said this week.

Lift boats are mainly used for their cranes to move equipment and other goods, he said. They work like regular ships while underway with the legs raised until they get on site.

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