Missing fisherman: Ice-box, t-shirt found floating in Corentyne River
Three days after falling overboard in waters off the coast of Guyana’s Corentyne, believed to be the maritime zone of neighbouring Suriname, there has been no sighting of Terrance Gomes, a fisherman from Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam).
His brother David Gomes recovered an ice-box with a t-shirt floating in waters just outside the Corentyne River and the family believes that the piece of clothing belongs to the missing Terrance.
David, 44, who is also a fisherman, has been searching unceasingly over the last 48 hours.
David said that based on the information provided to him, the vessel in which his brother was in along with four other crew members, was struck by a supply vessel belonging to an oil and gas company in the Coppename River (a river in Suriname in the district of Sipalwini).
The crew members were reportedly rescued by persons on the supply vessel but his brother was not so lucky.
David recalled receiving a message via radio contact when the boat was hit and said he was told that “one man was missing.” He claimed to have also been informed that no initial search was done to locate his brother who fell overboard. He said the crewmen told him that they called out for his brother but there was no answer.
According to the concerned brother, after he received the message, he anchored his boat in the Corentyne River and waited for some time hoping that the supply vessel would pass but that never happened.
He decided to head out on his boat and recalled setting eyes on the icebox.
“I drive five hours from where I leff from Corentyne River and I found the icebox just top of Nikerie and when I see the icebox, I see this jersey here, so I had hope… I said to myself this person get save,” David told the News Room on Saturday.
David, along with his sister Cecilia Thomas, have expressed frustration with the manner in which their brother’s incident is being handled.
They believe that the crew members and captain of the supply vessel should be held culpable for what happened to their eldest brother.
David claims that the supply vessel approached his brother’s fishing vessel and accused them of fishing illegally; his brother’s crew was ordered to remove the seine.
According to David, his brother was pulling up the seine but at some point, the supply vessel struck the fishing boat and caused it to flip, sending the crew members overboard. The puzzled siblings said their brother was a good swimmer.
“What a big ship like that doing next to a wooden boat in such a close range?” David questioned.
“Dem ram the boat at the side because how the icebox show, they hit the people on the side and the boat turn over.”
David believes that if his brother was fishing illegally, then a report should have been made with the authorities in Suriname.
Terrance Gomes was a father of five children and a grandfather of one.