A dinghy capsized on Friday, leaving a woman (19) missing in its wake.
Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) said their teams are active after a dinghy capsized en route to L. Maamendhoo from L. Fonadhoo. The dinghy was carrying two travelers; a male and a female, MNDF said.
According to MNDF, the man swam to Six Sense Laamu Resort, while the woman has not yet been located.
The 19-year-old Aminath Shima, who works at a resort near capital Male’, began her journey to her homeland L. Maamendhoo to see her child. Shima, travelling with a friend, began her journey via flight to Kahdhoo, where she boarded the small dinghy to reach her native island on Friday, due to the unavailability of ferries at that moment.
The dinghy was reportedly capsized by a wave between L. Gaadhoo and Six Sense Laamu resort.
Police says the duo began their journey in the dinghy around 6:00 p.m. on Friday and the dinghy capsized with a wave while they had halted the vessel for refueling. The dinghy had a small tank for patrol and the pair had taken an extra 20 liters of patrol with them, police said.
“The man was dropping the woman off to Maamendhoo, when they stopped the dinghy to refuel. This was when the wave crashed over and the dinghy capsized”, police said.
Some sources say the man swam almost three hours to reach the resort.
“The woman did not know how to swim. The man gave her a buoy-like canister to keep her afloat and a phone, before swimming to a nearby resort to get help”, police said.
Police said they are using all their resources to search for Shima, including helicopters, the MNDF Coast Guard and teams of divers.
Fishermen of Maamendhoo and other nearby islands are also on the lookout for the missing woman, they said.
Many fishermen reported that the seas were extremely rough, therefore it would be very hard to stay afloat with a canister, especially for one who doesn’t know how to swim. However, they will not stop their search, they said.