Specialist police divers were on Thursday unable to locate the body of a 28-year-old rock fisherman who was swept into the ocean near Currarong, north of Jervis Bay, on December 23.
It was the first time weather conditions were suitable for divers to conduct a search since the incident.
The fisherman, from Winston Hills in Sydney, had been fishing at Mermaids Inlet when he went to the water’s edge and was swept out to sea about 2.20am.
His friends reportedly threw a life ring into the water, but it was later recovered by Marine Rescue NSW.
Shoalhaven Police inspector Bruce Griffin said divers believed the man’s body was still in the area.
‘‘They’re fairly confident he’ll still be there, the only risk is predators ... [or] the body may have moved, may have gone into rocks’’, he said.
‘‘There’s been a fair swell running but they don’t think it would have been taken off into the sea.’’
He said the search would resume on Friday if weather conditions remained suitable.
Port Kembla Water Police sergeant Sean Netting said divers would be towed behind a boat while they searched.
He said many factors would influence how long divers could search for.
‘‘You can’t presume anything, you’ve just to go and have a look,’’ he said.
‘‘It could go either way.
‘‘They’re limited by the time they can spend in the water.’’
Since the man’s disappearance, there have been multiple shark sightings around the Jervis Bay area.