RNZAF Orion joins search for missing Kiribati fishermen

6:52 pm on 18 March 2018

Two Kiribati fishermen missing for four days are yet to be found.

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A Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion aircraft today helped search for the two missing Kiribati fishermen. Photo: Supplied / NZ Defence Force

The men aged 30 and 45 left a village in Kiribati's Nonouti atoll on a six-metre aluminium boat early on Wednesday to fish off the south end of the atoll.

An Air Force Orion left Auckland at about 6.30am today to help search an area in the Pacific Ocean which spans over 120,000 square kilometres.

Air Commodore Andrew Clark said the crew searched for about two and a half hours.

But he said they had no luck in finding them and the search crew was now at an airfield in the Pacific while the rescue co-ordination centre considered what to do next.

It appears the boat did not have a distress beacon, Mr Clark said.