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Coast Guard suspends search for missing cruise ship passenger

By CNN Staff
updated 8:20 PM EST, Fri November 15, 2013
  • U.S. Coast Guard: Suspending search is never easy
  • Woman reported overboard about 700 miles northeast of Hawaii
  • Cruise line says she intentionally went over

(CNN) -- The U.S. Coast Guard on Friday suspended the search for an American cruise ship passenger reported overboard in the Pacific Ocean northeast of Hawaii.

The 54-year-old woman was witnessed intentionally going overboard Wednesday from the Grand Princess, Princess Cruises said, adding that the witness' account was confirmed by closed-circuit television.

Two Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane crews, along with a Navy P-3 Orion airplane crew and a commercial tug and barge, scoured 10,000 square miles for more than 20 hours.

"Suspending a search is never an easy decision to make," said Lt. Cmdr. Peter Zauner, command duty officer of the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center, in a press release. "It's done with much deliberation and after a concerted effort to ensure that the Coast Guard has adequately searched all probable locations for survivors."

The Grand Princess was on day three of a 15-day cruise round-trip sail from San Francisco to Hawaii. The incident occurred about 700 miles northeast of Hawaii.

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