French Navy helicopter fails to find missing Belgian divers

The French Navy continued the search for two Belgian divers that went missing 12 kilometres out into the North Sea near to the French-Belgian border on Monday morning. The Belgian Maritime Rescue (MRCC) said on Monday afternoon that there is now little chance that the two missing divers will be found alive and that the search for them has now ended. All boats deployed by MRCC to search for the missing divers have now been called back to port. The search for the divers got under way on Sunday afternoon. They disappeared in the North Sea, between 12km and 15km off the coast on the border between Belgian and French territorial waters.     



MRCC’s Eva Descamps told VRT News that "During a so-called ‘first daylight view’ the French helicopter  checked the area once again” on Monday morning.  

"The search area has been defined based the currents. In the meantime it has become so large that it is no use searching with boats any more. The chance that they are still alive has become very remote. Moreover, we can’t deploy all the means at our disposal for a prolonged period, because we need to be ready to respond to emergencies quickly”.  

On Sunday afternoon several rescue boats and a helicopter searched for the two missing divers. However, the search proved fruitless. The missing divers are a man and a woman that dive as a hobby. They were diving in the vicinity of a shipwreck that is popular with amateur divers.    

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