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Coast Guard searches for 5 people after boat capsizes off Florida Keys

U.S. Coast Guard search off Sugarloaf Key
Posted at 8:17 PM, Aug 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-05 20:17:36-04

SUGARLOAF KEY, Fla. — Two people died, and five people were missing after a boat on an illegal voyage to the United States capsized Friday morning in waters off the Florida Keys.

The first call came in of a capsized boat around 10 a.m. Friday, the U.S. Coast Guard said. Officials with the Coast Guard said there were 15 people aboard the "rustic vessel" when it capsized.

The Coast Guard said Good Samaritans and partner agency crews were able to rescue eight people. Six of those people were taken for medical evaluation, while two were reported to be in good health.

Crews were still searching for five people approximately 14 miles south of Sugarloaf Key Friday night.

“Our search continues for others that may have survived this tragic incident," said Rear Admiral Brendan McPherson, commander of the Seventh Coast Guard District. "This situation highlights the risks these migrants face as they attempt to enter the United States illegally by sea."

Mcpherson continued, "The Florida Straits and its approaches can be hazardous for even the best trained and equipped mariners. For people illegally migrating aboard unseaworthy or overloaded boats and homemade rafts, who lack basic lifesaving equipment like life jackets, those risks can often prove deadly."