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A rescue helicopter was used in the search and winched one man to safety. File picture: HRS.
A rescue helicopter was used in the search and winched one man to safety. File picture: HRS.

Rescuers searching for a fish farm employee who went missing when a workboat capsized in Norway on Friday have given up hope of finding the 32-year-old man alive.

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Hege Kvalvik Viken, Head of Operations Unit Rana, Nordland Police District, said further searches will be looking for a body rather than a survivor.

On Friday afternoon salmon farmer Lovundlaks reported a crisis situation when the workboat with two men on board capsized off the Helgeland coast a little southeast of Sleneset in Lurøy municipality. 

Extensive searches

“HRS (Norway’s rescue coordination service) coordinated a rescue operation where a person was picked up alive and sent to hospital,” said Viken. 

“The other person on board has not been found, after extensive searches at sea and on land through the weekend.”

Viken said rough weather had made the search challenging and was still restricting what could be done at sea.

HRS had it had searched as thoroughly as possible. 

30 vessels involved

“There has been a comprehensive search under very poor conditions, both at sea and on land and from the air. There have been very strong winds, poor visibility and rough seas,” HRS wrote on its website on Saturday afternoon.

Around 30 vessels, from open private boats, ambulance boats and the rescue boat Odd Fellow III to ferries and speedboats that diverted from their routes with passengers on board participated in the attempt to find the missing man.

On land, a beach search was carried out with volunteer crews, the Red Cross Relief Corps Rana, Norwegian People’s Aid Sanitation Rana and the Civil Defence Peace Initiative Group Rana, led by the Local Rescue Centre Nordland and local police.

Helicopters

Ambulance helicopters and a Sea King helicopter were used to conduct several searches from the air.

“The National Rescue Central Northern Norway wishes to thank each of them for their efforts,” stated HRS.

At 5:30 pm Friday, the capsized workboat was located with one person on board.

“This person was lifted into a Sea King and at 18:08 flown to Nordland Hospital in Bodø for further medical follow-up”, HRS wrote.

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