Search for swimmer suspended
THE official search for a teenage swimmer missing off remote Pebbly Beach has been suspended after six days.
Coffs/Clarence duty officer Inspector Jo Reid said vessels in the area of Yuraygir National Park located 55km north of Coffs Harbour have been requested to keep an eye out for any sign of the 17-year-old, but confirmed the official search was suspended.
Surf Life Saving NSW confirmed on Wednesday it would continue the use of drone activity in the area for the next couple of days.
"It's such a long stretch of coast, there's been a big swell, and the currents north and south. The fact we still haven't had any luck doesn't look good," Insp Reid said.
Ali Mosawi was swimming with four other people on Saturday afternoon when he got into trouble just before 4pm in difficult conditions. Despite an extensive multi-agency search, there has been no sign of the Sydney student.
Three of the group were able to return to shore and alert authorities, but as they looked back into the water there was no sign of missing Ali, who is not a strong swimmer.
"They went out in a group which is one of the safety principles you want people to adhere to, but the surf is unforgivable and you've only got to get caught in a rip and one moment of panic can cost you," Insp Reid said.
"Especially in remote areas like that where help is far away."
PolAir, local police, volunteers from Surf Life Saving NSW and the Westpac Lifesaver Helicopter were all involved in the search.
Police are urging anyone with information on the incident to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page. People are reminded they should not report crime information via social media pages.