Coast Guard halts search for 16 migrants missing after boat sank during Hurricane Ian in Florida

The US Coast Guard has suspended the search for 16 migrants missing after their boat capsized off the Florida coast during Hurricane Ian. The first two bodies had been exhumed.

The Coast Guard tweeted on Sunday, “The search operation for 16 missing people has been stopped till further information is received.”

A boat carrying 27 Cuban migrants capsized and sank hours before Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida on Wednesday.

The US Border Patrol said the four migrants were able to swim to Stock Island, east of Key West. The Coast Guard said on Thursday that a total of nine people had been evacuated and rescued. On Friday, the Coast said that the two bodies— One Near Ocean Edge Marina One in the Boca Chica channel — was done found,

“It is a significant risk to be taken at sea at any time,” Coast Guard Captain Robert Kinsey said in a statement Friday. “It is reckless to take to the sea during a storm.”

A hurricane that struck earlier this week killed two people in Cuba and shut down the country’s electricity grid.

Ian made landfall near Cayo Costa, Florida, on Wednesday as a major Category 4 hurricane — the second-strongest possible category. Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale,

Stephen Smith contributed reporting.

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