Air Force joins search for missing yacht - National - NZ Herald News
Air Force joins search for missing yacht
2:17 PM Sunday Jun 30, 2013
An Air Force plane is today searching for any sign of the American schooner Nina in the ocean off the North Cape.
The seven-strong crew of the classic 21-metre racing
yacht, which was sailing to Australia from Opua in the Bay of Islands, was last heard from on June 4.
Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCCNZ) spokeswoman Sarah Brazil
said an aerial search today was looking for a life raft or debris from the yacht.
Previous sweeps, including a two-hour helicopter search yesterday, were looking for the schooner itself.
said an Air Force P3 Orion left Whenuapai air base about 7.15am and arrived at the search area about 8am.
"They've been conducting a visual search of an area looking for any signs of a lift
raft or debris."
The Orion was searching a 3300 square nautical mile area, about 125km east-northeast of the North Cape, in sweeps of two nautical miles.
It was not known how long today's search would take to complete.
Yesterday, the Tauranga-based Phillips search and rescue helicopter performed a two-hour coastal search from Port Waikato to New Plymouth.
It followed an extensive aerial shoreline search along the northern west coast of New Zealand - an area determined by RCCNZ based on drift modelling from the last known position of the yacht.
The 84-year-old wooden vessel, owned by American David Dyche, 58, was heading for Newcastle, Australia.
Mr Dyche was travelling with his 60-year-old wife, Rosemary, their son David, 17, a 35-year-old British man and well-known maritime technology expert Evi Nemeth, 73.
An 18-year-old American woman and 28-year-old American man were also on board.
They left the Bay of Islands on May 29 and their last communication was a text on June 4.