Search for swimmer suspended after 'exhaustive' inquiries
THE search for a swimmer feared missing off the coast of Evans Head has been suspended, police have confirmed.
Police were called to Shark Bay about 7.20pm on Tuesday after reports of a woman who was seen entering the water and then could not be seen again.
A large-scale search operation commenced involving local police assisted by the Marine Area Command, Marine Rescue, Surf Life Saving, Fire and Rescue NSW and the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.
But the search last night turned up no sign of the woman and it was suspended about 10pm.
The search resumed early this morning but police have confirmed it was suspended at 1pm.
There have still been no reports of any person missing from the area and no other information has come to had after exhaustive interviews with the public, police said in a statement.
Inquiries are ongoing.
DYE bombs have been used as part of a large-scale effort to search for a woman suspected missing in the surf at Evans Head.
Richmond Police District Inspector Susie Johnston said all the emergency services who assisted in last night's search effort had returned today from 6am.
"Last night at about 7.20pm we had reports from two female witnesses that they saw a woman who was described as caucasian, between 30-40 years old, of a very slim build, with blondey-brown dreadlocks, that she was in the water about chest height down at Shark Bay," Insp Johnston said.
"The witnesses took their eyes off her for a couple of minutes and they turned back and she wasn't in view anymore.
"Today we've resumed a search here … and we've got a command post set up down at Shark Bay."
She said police were investigating whether a pair of pink Rip Curl thongs left at the beach there could have any connected to the suspected missing swimmer, or had simply been left behind there.
"We're just exhausting all avenues and looking around," she said.
"Surf rescue have put out some dye bombs to see which way the current's going.
"Interestingly, we still don't have reports of a missing person.
"So we do appeal for anybody who was in the water (last night) at Shark Bay at Evans Head, that they come and let us know they arrived safety home.
"We'll be searching, we're going to have another briefing at lunch time and assess where we're up to."
Insp Johnston said they had been able to rule out some members of the community fitting the description.
"We've had some really good information from the Evans Head community about people who fit that rough description and, fortunately, we've been able to track all those people down and account for them and they're all safe and well," she said.
"Until we get some more information we'll keep searching."
As emergency services continue their search, Insp Johnston urged people to be cautious swimming at dawn or dusk, and particularly if you consider swimming after consuming alcohol.
"People who drink alcoholic beverages and go for a swim, you've just got to be really aware of your water safety because obviously being intoxicated affects your skills and your ability to swim and just being aware of currents," she said.
EMERGENCY services have returned to Evans Head coastline this morning to continue a search for a woman reported missing while swimming overnight.
Richmond Police District officers were called to Shark Bay about 7.20pm on Tuesday after reports of a woman entering the water before disappearing.
A search operation began, involving local police assisted by the Marine Area Command, Marine Rescue, Surf Life Saving, Fire and Rescue NSW and the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter, but there was no sign of the woman and the search was suspended about 10pm.
There have been no reports of any person missing from the area.
The woman was described as being of caucasian appearance with a slim build, aged between 30-40 years, with blonde dreadlocks.
The ongoing search today will involve the Marina Area Command, Marine Rescue, Surf Life Saving and a NSW Police Force rescue drone.
A command post has been established at Shark Bay beach car park at Evans Head.
Police have urged anyone with information to contact Lismore Police Station on 02 6626 0599 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report information via NSW Police social media pages.
EMERGENCY services including Marine Rescue, police, Surf Lifesaving and the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter are searching for a missing swimmer last seen at 8pm on Tuesday.
But as yet no-one has been reported missing from the popular seaside town of Evans Head.
Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter spokesman Jimmy Keough said the female swimmer was seen around 8pm at Shark Bay, Evans Head.
"Just before 8pm last night we were informed by police about concerns for a female in the water at Shark Bay," he said.
"She was initially seen in the water around 100m off shore then the people who saw her lost of her."
Mr Keough said police, ambulance, Marine Rescue and Surf Lifesaving crews attended the location and commenced the search.
"Our helicopter arrived at 8.20pm on the scene and the crew used night vision goggles and a spotlight to search," he said.
"A search of Shark Bay and surrounding coastline was performed by Surf lifesaving, Marine Rescue, Police and our helicopter.
"Today the search will continue even though there is no person yet reported missing, so if anyone has any info please contact local police."
Marine Rescue spokesman Phil Campbell confirmed his crews were out last night assisting police.
"Marine Rescue vessels were out searching for the missing female," he said.
"We will also be out this morning assisting where we can."
More to come.
Search for suspected missing swimmer suspended - Evans Head
Wednesday, 25 November 2020 08:00:49 PM
The search for a swimmer, feared missing at Evans Head in the state's north, has been suspended.
About 7.20pm last night (Tuesday 24 November 2020), officers from Richmond Police District were called to Shark Bay, Evans Head, after reports a woman was seen entering the water and had not been seen since.
A search operation commenced by local police assisted by the Marine Area Command, Marine Rescue, Surf Life Saving, Fire and Rescue NSW and the Westpac Rescue Helicopter; however, there was no sign of the woman and the search was suspended about 10pm.
The search resumed this morning at 8am (Wednesday 25 November).
With still no one officially reported missing and no further information coming to hand after exhaustive interviews with the public, the search was suspended at 1pm.
Inquiries will continue.