Police call off search again

A Fiji Navy diver resurfaces after conducting his search for the vehicle 18 year old Tasleem Ali was driving in before crashing into the Rewa river. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

THE search for Tasleem Ali, 18, and his vehicle was called off again yesterday after an unsuccessful dive attempt by the Republic of Fiji Navy divers.

The navy divers conducted the search for about five hours in the Rewa River in Waidra, Baulevu, outside Nausori. Police spokeswoman Ana Naisoro said following discussions between the police commissioner and the Fiji Navy commander, a combined team of divers attempted search for the missing vehicle.

“The navy divers were brought in to reinforce the Police Special Response Unit divers and the joint team made one attempt but had to call off the search efforts due to unfavourable and dangerous conditions,” she said.

“The current was still too strong and visibility was poor to safely conduct any search.

“Traffic officers have so far gathered information indicating that only one person was inside the vehicle contrary to eyewitness reports of there being four people when the incident occurred.

“However, we reiterate again that this is still to be confirmed as there is yet to be a positive sighting of the vehicle.

“Like Thursday they had attempted to dive, but due to the unfavourable and unsafe conditions the search was called off.”

Boat operator Ronald Avinesh Lal, whose boat was used in the search on Wednesday and Thursday, said family and friends were hoping Ali or his vehicle would be found soon.

“I had been taking out police personnel during the search the past two days and it was hard because the current was strong and the water was really murky,” he said.

“Finding something here in this condition will take a long time.”

Police have stated that a decision to continue the search will be made this morning.

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