Rescuers search for four boaters missing after Alabama storms

Reuters News
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Posted: Apr 27, 2015 10:06 AM

(Reuters) - Crews searched on Monday for four people missing after powerful thunderstorms caught them by surprise and capsized their sailboats during a weekend regatta off the Alabama coast, U.S. Coast Guard officials said.

Rescuers worked through the night looking for survivors in the Mobile Bay area, where severe weather struck the Dauphin Island regatta and other boats on Saturday afternoon. The bodies of two boaters killed in the storm, which brought winds of more than 70 miles per hour, were found over the weekend.

Coast Guard spokesman Carlos Vega said the four boaters who are missing were registered with the regatta, which included about 200 people and 100 vessels.

A fifth person in the race who was believed missing later called authorities to let them know he was safe, Vega said.

Officials asked private boaters in the area to stay off the water on Monday before more expected rain and storms.

(Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Doina Chiacu)