73ºF

Coast Guard suspends search for missing cruise ship passenger

Rina Patel fell overboard during Carnival Ecstasy cruise

Caution tape surrounds the area where a 32-year-old woman fell overboard on the Carnival Ecstasy.
Caution tape surrounds the area where a 32-year-old woman fell overboard on the Carnival Ecstasy.

MIAMI – The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for a missing cruise ship passenger who fell overboard Wednesday on a Carnival cruise.

A Coast Guard news release said the search for Rina Patel, 32, of Interlaken, New York, was suspended Thursday night.

The Coast Guard spent 43 hours searching for Patel, covering more than 2,800 square miles.

Patel was a passenger on the Carnival Ecstasy when she was reported missing about 27 miles southwest of Freeport, Bahamas.

"We would like to extend our deepest condolences to the loved ones and all that have been affected by this tragedy," Capt. Todd Coggeshall said. "Suspending search efforts is always a painful decision, but despite our best efforts, we have been unable to locate Rina, and have made the difficult decision to suspend the search pending any further developments."