MERSING, Aug 14 (Bernama) -- The search-and-rescue operation (SAR) for two Singaporeans who went missing while kayaking in Endau waters near here on Aug 8 has been widened to cover Beserah waters off Kuantan as it entered its sixth day today.
Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) Mersing Zone director Maritime Commander Haris Fadzillah Abdullah said the sea surface search, involving five air assets belonging to MMEA, Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and the Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM), covers 1,200 square nautical miles stretching from Endau to Beserah.
“The SAR also involves 10 marine assets of MMEA, PDRM, JBPM and Royal Malaysian Navy covering 451 square nautical miles of the same body of waters with 119 rescuers from various agencies.
“The search has been widened until Kuantan following the discovery of a kayak and personal belongings of Tan and Puah by fishermen at 12.30 pm yesterday at a location 0.6 nautical mile from Kuantan Port,” he told reporters at the Penyabong jetty in Endau here today.
Last Thursday, Tan Eng Soon, 62, and Puah Geok Tin, 57, went missing at about 5.40 pm after they got separated from a group of 13 friends while kayaking between Pulau Sri Buat, Pahang and Pulau Mertang, Mersing.
Haris Fadzillah said the kayak and personal belongings of Tan and Puah arrived at the Penyabong jetty at 8.30 am today for identification by their family members.
The belongings, comprising a bag with Malaysian and Singapore money, a handphone, Tan’s Singapore passport, a travelling bag, identity cards and paddles, were identified by Tan’s wife, Kwan Yoke Yee, and Puah’s son, Louis Pang, 24.
He said SAR personnel had also scoured the islands around Endau waters at the request of the families of Tan and Puah.
“For the past two days, the sea has been rough with waves of between 1.5 metres and 3 metres high, which is dangerous to small boats,” he added.