Yacht located in search for missing sailor

A yacht missing off Victoria’s east coast has been located by emergency services this morning, however the skipper is still missing.

The vessel, Affirmation, was located by the Australian Maritime Safe Authority’s (AMSA) jet aircraft in seas near the Victorian and NSW border about 5am today.

A New South Wales Police Force helicopter conducted a search of the yacht, but the 66-year-old sailor remains missing.

A land, air and sea search is continuing to try and locate the Parramatta man by the Victorian Water Police, Air Wing, NSW police, AMSA, local police and the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard.

The alarm was raised when the missing yachtsman’s family contacted NSW police concerned for their relative’s welfare on Friday 20 March.

It’s believed the experienced yachtsman, who was sailing solo in his 35ft monohull vessel, planned to sail from Queenscliff in Victoria to Sydney.

His last known stop was overnight on Wednesday 18 March in Refuge Cove, Wilsons Promontory.

Police are of the belief the man departed Refuge Cove at first light on Thursday morning before sailing east past Lakes Entrance.

Police hold concerns for the man’s welfare and fear he may have suffered from a medical incident or mishap on the yacht after not seeming like himself during his last known contact with family.

Police continue to provide regular updates to the missing man’s family.

Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report to www.crimestoppersvic.com.au.

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