Nina crew lost at sea too

MICHAEL FIELD
Last updated 16:02 22/03/2014
yacht
Facebook.com/NinaRescue
MISSING: Danielle Wright.

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Parents of a teenage girl who was among seven people presumed lost when the American yacht Nina disappeared in the Tasman Sea last year have reacted strongly to the vast effort now underway to find the missing Malaysian Airliner in the Indian Ocean.

Robin and Ricky Wright, parents of missing Nina crew member Danielle Wright, have told The Daily Advertiser newspaper in Louisiana that they are sickened by what they see on television and are now taking action.

"It makes me sick to watch all this effort on this plane when Australia and the US refused to help," Ricky Wright told the publication. 

"New Zealand was willing to help out but stopped. I know our search was a drop in the bucket for what is happening now."

They have angrily contacted politicians saying there are six Americans aboard Nina and the United States must help New Zealand find them.

The other missing person was British.

Nina left Opua, in the Bay of Islands on May 29 last year bound for Newcastle, Australia. It was last heard from on June 4, when conditions in the Tasman were very rough.

On June 25 the Rescue Co-ordination Centre launched what turned into one of their biggest-ever searches, but with nothing found it was suspended on July 4.

The centre has commissioned an independent investigation into the conduct of the search.

Families, until recently, were convinced that the 85-year-old vessel Nina is dismasted but floating in the Tasman, caught in the circular currents.

However the family of the 58-year-old skipper David Dyche, whose wife Rosemary and son Davy were also on board, last week announced that they would hold a church service for their missing relatives.

But the Wrights say that they and two other families are asking lawmakers in each of their states to consider using United States government resources to look for Nina while they are out on this new mission searching for the missing aircraft.

"We think it's a long shot that Nina could have drifted all the way over to the west side of Australia given the strong Tasman currents," Robin Wright said in an email. "But we've come to realise that anything is possible. The families are going to start sending messages to our elected officials to ask again for satellite image help or that they look for Nina while their rescue pilots and equipment are flying over that area."

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The Wright family emailed US Senator David Vitter appealing for help to get Indian Ocean aircraft over the Tasman. 

"My request is; while the USA is expending millions of dollars in resources to search for the missing plane, Flight MH 370, can our government send resources to our locations of interest for S/V Nina?" the email says.

"I am asking again; New Zealand needs help from the United States of America. NZ has only (four million) people, while USA has 400 million people as a tax base. 

"Six Americans are on this American vessel... I would like the USA to fly over the remote reefs and atolls. This would only take a day or two."

- Stuff

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