Body of missing fisherman recovered

UPDATE 3PM: A BODY was sighted in the water at Corindi Beach earlier this afternoon. 

Police and emergency services were called to the scene just after 1.30pm.

Police said the body has not been formally identified, but it is believed to be that of a 26-year-old Red Rock fisherman, Michael Fernance, who went missing in the area earlier this week.

The body was recovered by local police. 

A report is being prepared for the information of the Coroner.

This story will continue to be updated as more details are known.


UPDATE SATURDAY 1.44PM: A SIGHTING off the coast of Red Rock is being investigated by Marine Rescue Woolgoolga.

Marine Rescue NSW said at the request of local police, crews have been asked to verify the sighting reported to be 500 metres south-east of Red Rock.

The sighting comes after the search for missing fisherman, believed to be 26-year-old Michael Fernance, enters its third day.


UPDATE FRIDAY 9.30AM: THE search for a fisherman missing from Red Rock will resume this morning with police divers arriving to offer their assistance.

The Westpac Life Saver helicopter is also expected to return today.

The 26-year-old, believed to be Red Rock and Grafton resident Michael Fernance, has not been seen since he went fishing off the headland on Wednesday afternoon.

North Coast Holiday Parks Red Rock manager Geoffrey Wruck said the man lived locally for part of the year, and was very well-known in the area as an avid fisherman.

He said a number of locals had been deeply saddened by news the 26-year-old had gone missing.

"It's hard, especially when you see somebody just starting out their lives," Mr Wruck said. 

"He is such a nice guy and I've already had two phone calls from people who somehow heard it was him and said he'd taken them fishing before.

"He really touched people, and is just a kind person."


UPDATE 4.30PM: THE missing Red Rock man has not been found during today's search.

Authorities suspended today's marine and land searches just after 4pm.

Search efforts to locate the man will resume in the morning.


UPDATE 2PM: THE man missing in waters off the Coffs Coast has been confirmed as a resident of Red Rock.

Police are still searching waters in the area, assisted by a Westpac Life Saver helicopter deployed from Queensland.

The marine search has stretched from Pebbly Beach in the north to Arrawarra in the south.


UPDATE 11.45AM: A HELICOPTER has been tasked from Queensland to provide aerial support to locate a missing fisherman.

Conditions are currently favourable for the search team with a swell of between 1.5-2 metres, little wind and good visibility.

It is understood that the missing man was not wearing a lifejacket.

NSW Lifesaving Manager Andy Kent said that lifesavers will continue to provide support in the operation.


THURSDAY 9.30AM: A LARGE-scale search is underway for a 26-year-old fisherman missing from the Coffs Coast.

The man had gone fishing at Red Rock Headland at 4.30pm yesterday.

Just before 5.30am today, a friend of the man reported him missing after the 26-year-old failed to return from the location.

Following an initial search of the area, officers located the man's fishing gear on the rocks.

A land and sea search is now underway involving Surf Life Saving North Coast, Coffs Harbour City Council lifeguards, Coffs/Clarence police and the Marine Area Command.

It is not yet known if the man is local to the area.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

This page will update as more information comes to light.


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