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Page last updated at 14:47 GMT, Wednesday, 23 September 2009 15:47 UK

Fisherman and boat missing at sea

Edward Blanchet
Edward Blanchet was reported missing, along with his boat, on Tuesday

Rescue teams are searching for a man who failed to return from a fishing trip off Jersey.

Edward Blanchet, 66, was due back at Greve De Lecq on Tuesday, prompting a search by the Channel Islands Air Search team, lifeboat crews and police.

Fishing boats joined in the hunt for his boat, which resumed at 0600 BST and focused between Grosnez and Bonne Nuit Bay, the coastguard said.

The missing boat, J272 Moonlight Shadow, is about 16ft (5m) and white.

Bays and coves in the area have been searched by crews on the St Helier and St Catherine's lifeboats.

Amongst the boat owners... we're all hollow, hollow to a man
Christopher Le Boutillier, Greve de Lecq boat owners association

Items from the missing boat have been found during the search.

A spokesman for the Channel Islands Air Search team said: "We searched the entire area using the infrared camera, between Grosnez and Bonne Nuit including the Paternoster, Dirouilles and Ecrehous reefs.

"A number of items of equipment from the casualty vessel were found, however neither the vessel itself nor the fisherman were spotted."

Christopher Le Boutillier, president of Greve de Lecq boat owners association, joined the search.

The search area
Rescue teams have been searching an area around the north of the island

He told BBC Jersey: "I've known Eddie - Eddie is a couple of years older than I - since we were old enough to talk.

"Eddie was born at Greve de Lecq, in St Mary's Barracks, he's lived at Greve de Lecq, he is Greve de Lecq basically."

"Amongst the boat owners... we're all hollow, hollow to a man.

"We're all a close knit community. We all help each other, only two days ago I helped him launch his boat and three or four days ago he helped me recover - and we're as close as that.

"Obviously we're very concerned for his safety."



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