The Coast Guard is searching for a houseboat owner near Ketchikan after finding the ship empty and adrift Wednesday morning near the Tongass Narrows.
Ketchikan police first found the boat, a 40-foot houseboat named Diver III owned by Ketchikan resident John Anderson, 52, early Wednesday morning. KPD Deputy Chief Josh Dossett said Anderson has been a member of the community for the past five years.
Police said the boat was dangerously close to a break wall, and contacted the Coast Guard for help. The Coast Guard activated a Motor Life Boat crew and an Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter for the search. The helicopter crew joined the search at sunrise, the Coast Guard said.
A boarding team found that the houseboat had recently been occupied, with wood stove full of still-hot coals, a dog on board, and the lights and heat still on.
The boarding crew began searching for Anderson, and instigated a search for a potential person overboard in the water.
Crews were able to determine that the houseboat had dragged its anchor due to high winds that were blowing around 35 mph and gusting up to 70 mph, but as of midday, they had not been able to locate Anderson.
The Coast Guard is asking members of the public who have information regarding Anderson or the Diver III to contact the Sector Juneau command center at 907-463-2980.