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Arron Hough went missing while working on the Harmony of the Seas, owned by Royal Caribbean.
Arron Hough went missing while working on the Harmony of the Seas, owned by Royal Caribbean.
Image: Andrew Matthews/PA Images

Search for missing 20 year-old believed to have fallen overboard cruise ship in Caribbean suspended

Arron Hough was reported missing after failing to report for work on Christmas Day.
Dec 28th 2018, 2:09 PM 40,897 17

THE SEARCH FOR a missing British entertainer who is believed to have fallen overboard from the cruise ship where he was working has been suspended.

Arron Hough from Sunderland was reported missing after failing to report for work on the Harmony of the Seas on Christmas Day.

At the time, the ship was 267 miles north-west of Puerto Rico on a seven-night cruise, having left Fort Lauderdale in Florida on 23 December.

However, BBC has quoted a statement from a US coast guard spokesman saying it has made the “difficult decision” to stop the search for the 20 year-old after two days.

A spokesman for the US Coastguard, Jonathan Lally, said that the water was relatively warm and visibility for a search was good at the time that Hough fell in the sea.

“There are cases when a person has survived for days in the water,” he said, adding that suspending a search was never a decision that was made lightly by first responders.

The last CCTV footage of Mr Hough showed him heading on to the ship’s deck at about 4:00am local time, according to the operator of the ship, Royal Caribbean.

The US Coast Guard was later alerted when staff on the ship realised he was missing. 

Three aircraft and a ship trawled an area of more than 3,700 square miles in size in the search for Mr Hough, according the US coast guard.

“Anytime we go out on a search and rescue there is always that hope that we are going to bring someone back and reunite them with friends and family,” Lally said.

“We’ve been in contact with members of Mr Hough’s family throughout our search efforts and know this is a very difficult and painful time for them.”

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Stephen McDermott

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