Rescuers in New Jersey are searching for a missing fisherman whose clam boat was found empty Friday morning in Little Egg Harbor.
The Coast Guard, New Jersey State Police and the Tuckerton Fire Department are using a helicopter and a boat to search for the fisherman, whose boat was found aground on Hither Island in Ocean County. A rescue effort has been underway for about eight hours.
“We’ve all been praying,” said Glenn Miller, a longtime friend of the missing boater.
“[I] helped him load it up, got all his gear together. I watched him cruise on out of the Tuckerton Creek and that’s the last thing I’ve heard from him.”
The fisherman, whose name was not released, told a relative Thursday night he had run aground but did not need assistance. Some worried he ran into trouble while trying to get his boat back in the water.
“It gets kind of hairy because it goes from being ankle-deep water [and] right to the left of you it could be 12 feet,” said Mike Joannides Jr. from Stafford Township. “The drop off is pretty steep.”
With weather turning colder by the hour, rescuers limited their search to the air Friday afternoon, authorities said. They planned to continue searching the water tomorrow weather permitting.