SPRUCE HEAD — The U.S. Coast Guard has called off a search for three fishermen off the Maine Coast because the mayday call that prompted it appears to have been a hoax.
A Coast Guard spokesperson said Thursday that crews from Maine and Massachusetts responded to a mayday call placed at 6:30 a.m. about the vessel.
The Coast Guard and Maine Marine Patrol were searching for the three people in the water just south of Spruce Head.
The Coast Guard said at midday Thursday that there are no indications of distress or missing people in the area and it has suspended the search.
“Hoax distress calls, like the one we received this morning, unnecessarily put our rescue crews at risk, drain resources, and may limit our ability to respond to actual emergencies,” Capt. Brian LeFebvre, commanding officer of Coast Guard Sector Northern New England, said Thursday in a statement.
“Today’s hoax is particularly offensive given the loss of four fishermen aboard the Emmy Rose just last week. We will use all available resources to identify and hold the responsible individual accountable,” he said.