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Japan calls off full-time search for survivors of missing live export ship

By North Asia correspondent Jake Sturmer and Yumi Asada in Tokyo, Friday September 11, 2020 - 12:45 EST
Audience submitted image
The Gulf Livestock 1 sank after a massive wave hit the ship. - Audience submitted

Japan's Coast Guard has suspended its full-time search for 40 missing sailors — including two Australians — who were on board a live export ship feared to have sunk off the country's south-west.



Authorities have been unable to locate any survivors since rescuing a Filipino sailor on Friday.

It has now been more than a week since the Gulf Livestock 1

The surviving crew say an engine cut out and then a massive wave hit the ship, forcing it to capsize and sink.

authorities last night made the difficult decision to effectively call off the search.

They will continue to look for survivors, but as part of their regular patrols. Forty people remain missing including the two Australians.

One is 25 year-old Queensland vet Lukas Orda. Late last week, his wife pleaded on social media for her husband to "come home".

Emma Orda, who recently had their first child, Theo, posted a photo of the pair to Facebook overnight with a touching message.

"Please come home really soon, we love you," the post read.

In total, the Coast Guard has found two survivors and a body — all are sailors from the Philippines.



The 30-year-old rescued on Friday, Jay-Nel Rosals described the moment the massive wave hit.

He said he was with two others and heading towards the bridge wearing life jackets when the wave hit and the ship capsized.

Mr Rosals told authorities how he was thrown into the water when the ship capsized and sank.

When he came up, he grabbed onto a cow to survive. He was swept away for a few minutes but managed to climb into a life raft but for several days watched ships and aircraft fly past while searching.

Eventually he was picked up and is now being treated in hospital for severe dehydration.

Officials were forced to suspend their search on the — when they resumed on Monday they found a lifeboat washed ashore on a tiny island, but unfortunately there were no signs of life on board.


- ABC

© ABC 2020

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