Fishing tool discovered in the search for missing diver

MNDF's Coast Guard divers have located a fishing tool believed to have been used by missing diver Mahmood Saeed.

Mahmood Saeed went diving off Fuvahmulah City around 2:30 pm on Monday. He was reported as missing around 3:36 pm. MNDF said he was last seen wearing a black diving suit, shorts, fins, and mask.

MNDF has been actively searching for the missing diver since Monday. In this regard, MNDF's Southern Area Command Coastguard Fourth Squadron has been canvassing the sea area in search of Mahmood. Coast Guard divers are active in the area, and harbor patrol vessels are also searching the sea area. The search has been further expanded with MNDF's Donier aircraft and helicopter joining the search.

MNDF said over 40 nautical miles have been searched by air and sea. In the most recent developments, Coast guard divers discovered a fishing tool 59 meters below sea level. Since then, 550 meters have been searched by the divers. While the area has a natural slope, it is believed that the point between where the tool was discovered and the searched area has a depth of around 70 to 100 meters.

According to MNDF, rescue efforts are challenging due to worsening weather conditions. However, the search and rescue operation will continue over the next few days, MNDF said.