NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Authorities are searching for three missing boaters who left New Providence earlier this week, according to the Royal Bahamas Defense Force.
Eyewitness News understands that the 12-foot skiff left Potter’s Cay on Sunday to fish for a couple of hours around the northern coast of New Providence and were expected back on the same day.
However, the men, including Barry Cartwright, 57, and two other men, have not returned or been heard from.
Cartwright’s brother, Max, told Eyewitness News his brother is an experienced fisherman and has faced challenges at sea before.
He said the family remains hopeful the men will be found safely, though he acknowledged that six days at sea increases the risks significantly, particularly with adverse weather and the recent cold front.
“For the size boat they went in, it could only have been for a couple [of] hours or so,” he said of the planned trip.
“I think it’s 14 of 15 foot Boston Whaler with a 25 horsepower [engine] on it.
“That evening [Sunday] when they did not come back in and the next morning, one of the guy’s girlfriend called BASRA because she came out there looking for him and she said she saw his car parked later.
“Later on, his sisters came and took the car. So far from then, we let the authorities know.
“I have been out one time with BASRA and we looked on the eastern end of Rose Island; went all the way almost to Eleuthera and turned around and we looked and we didn’t see anything.”
He continued: “I am hoping and I am keeping my fingers crossed.”
RBDF’s Search and Rescue Coordinator Commander William Sturrup said: “After some five days of canvassing an expansive area of waters around the northern island of New Providence and surrounding cays and inlet by members of the RBDF and BASRA, we haven’t located the vessel or its occupants as yet.
“A United States Coast Guard air asset has also joined in the search efforts which extended as far as Chub Cay, Ship Channel and Highbourne Cays.
“The Royal Bahamas Defence Force is grateful to interagency partners for their support in this activity and remains poised to keeping Bahamian waters safe”.