On Sunday, 03 October, 2021 the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard received information from Venezuelan authorities indicating that a vessel with twenty-five (25) persons had departed Trinidad and Tobago for the Delta Region of Venezuela, on the night of Friday, 01 October, 2021 and had not yet arrived. Reports indicate that the vessel is suspected of having sunk in Venezuelan waters.
Initial searches by persons in Venezuela have led to the alleged discovery of four (4) bodies and one (1) survivor. A total of twenty (20) persons still remain unaccounted for. Upon receiving this information, the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard assigned one of its maritime assets, which was already on patrol, to aid in the Search and Rescue Operation. The Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard has been in communication with Venezuelan counterparts in an attempt to locate additional persons with searches being conducted within the territorial waters of Trinidad and Tobago.
Initial reports suggest that these missing individuals are most likely in Venezuelan waters and, as such, the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard will continue to cooperate with Venezuelan authorities as part of a coordinated Search and Rescue Operation in accordance with the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) and International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue (SAR).
The Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard continues to provide border security and other services in the face of the threat of COVID-19 in order to maintain the safety and security of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago through the conduct of maritime security and safety patrols within our area of operations.