The search for three men missing in the waters of St Georges Basin has now become a search for bodies, police have confirmed.
This afternoon, police working from a mobile command centre at Erowal Bay boat ramp were towing a sonar scanner behind a boat in an effort to locate the men’s bodies.
At a press conference, Shoalhaven Local Area Inspector Bruce Griffin said with water temperatures at 15 degrees there was little hope of finding the men alive.
“We are confident there’s nobody on the fringe, SES has searched the foreshores,” he said.
“If they made it out [of the water] last night and we don’t know about it, there’s a chance they survived but we don’t hold a great deal of hope at the moment.
“The search will go on but we have real concerns for their welfare if they are still in the water.
“We will have to wait to see what the sonar brings up.
“We’ll continue the search over the next few days. Hopefully they’ll come to the surface.”
Four men, three from Sydney and one who moved to Sanctuary Point about six months ago, were in a small tinnie police believe overturned late Sunday night or in the early hours of Monday morning.
A 22-year-old man from Ashcroft was rescued by a local resident on a paddle board after he heard cries for help at 2.30am.
The other men, aged 19, 26 and 29, remain unaccounted for.
Their boat was found washed up on Wrights Beach with a paddle and their shoes inside.
It is believed the boat did not have a motor and the men were not wearing lifejackets.
South Coast Register