The search for a Sydney fisherman who’s been missing for more than 18 hours after his boat capsized in Botany Bay is being scaled back, police say.
The 37-year-old from Bankstown, who’s been named in media as Tim Nguyen, was fishing with two friends in a small runabout when they were thrown into the water as the swell increased on Thursday just before 7pm, police said.
None of the three men were wearing life jackets, according to Stephen Leahy from the Westpac rescue helicopter.
Two of the men, aged 32 and 41, swam to safety and scrambled on to rocks before they were rescued on Thursday night and taken to hospital, where they remain in a stable condition.
Land and water searches have failed to find Mr Nguyen and the search will be scaled back, Acting Superintendent Leanne McCusker told reporters on Friday.
Family members of Mr Nguyen, including his fiancee, watched from rocks at Botany National Park as the search crews scoured the waters, according to Fairfax Media.
Mr Nguyen had reportedly been fishing only four times in his life before Thursday night’s outing.
It’s been a horror fortnight for drownings along the state’s coastline, with authorities urging caution to those who head to the waterways.
Twelve people have died along the NSW coast in the past two weeks, Mr Leahy told the ABC.
Surf Life Saving NSW said there had been a spike in coastal drownings across NSW this summer, with one person dying almost every third day.
NSW Lifesaving manager Andy Kent reminded those heading into the water to remain safe.
“It’s important that people know their limitations, check the conditions before heading out, make the effort to go to a patrolled location and take all safety messages and weather warnings seriously,” he said.