UPDATE: Coast Guard suspends search for missing kayaker - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

UPDATE: Coast Guard suspends search for missing kayaker

Posted: Updated:

By: Chloe Leshner

cleshner@abc6.com

@cleshnerabc6

WARWICK, R.I. (WLNE) -- The Coast Guard has called off its search for a man who went missing kayaking off of Conimicut Point Friday, saying conditions are no longer conducive to finding him alive.

A fire official told ABC 6 it's like looking for a needle in a haystack and despite nearly 24 hours of extensive searching, they still hadn't found a sign of Michael Perry.

Despite its best efforts, the Coast Guard suspended its search for Michael Perry, a kayaker who went missing Friday.

"Surviving in 32 degree water is very difficult and the amount of time that we searched really goes beyond how long someone can survive in that type of water condition," says Captain Richard Schultz with the Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England.

Family last heard from Perry around noon yesterday and say he went kayaking in those waters often but the weather was so bad that night, it hampered the Coast Guard's search.

Conditions improved today, allowing more crews to help.

"We were not able to have helicopters last night because of the weather conditions but we had helicopters all day today as well as about a half a dozen other agencies," says Schultz.

Family and friends stayed on the scene throughout the entire search and the Coast Guard told Perry's wife and child they suspended the search late this evening.

Officials using this as a warning to others who may attempt to kayak in this area.

"People need to make sure they're paying attention to the weather conditions and not just the conditions they're about to get underway in but look at the forecast. They should understand how long their trip is going to be, their full trip, and allow extra time to make that trip and make sure they have appropriate safety gear on board," says Schultz.

Fire officials tell ABC 6 News that on average, at least one person drowns in those waters every year.

(C) WLNE/ABC 6 2018

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