Coast Guard Suspects Missing Family a Hoax

Officials can't find any proof vessel off San Francisco actually existed
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 26, 2013 1:11 PM CST
Coast Guard Suspects Missing Family a Hoax
File photo of a U.S. Coast Guard boat.   (AP Photo/Michael C. York)

Another high-profile hoax? The Coast Guard has suspended its search for a boat that supposedly went missing off San Francisco because it has turned up no trace of the boat or survivors after two days and can find no records that it existed in the first place, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. Officials aren't flat-out calling it a hoax yet, just saying it is "possibly a hoax," reports CNN.

The search began Sunday afternoon after a man called in an SOS on a marine radio and said he, his wife, and two small children were in distress and abandoning the vessel he called Charm Blow. That's all officials know at this point. "When you don't have anything to go by, it makes it frustrating," says a Coast Guard official. "There's no name, there's no confirmed name of the vessel, no one has come forward to say, 'Hey, my family's missing' or anything." CNN notes the rescue attempt's cost numbers in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. (More Coast Guard stories.)

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