The Coast Guard has suspended their search for a boater who disappeared after his vessel had an accident off Longport late Sunday night.

Pontoon boat that struck a buoy off Longport (NBC 40)

They searched for 45-year-old Andrew Biddle for nearly 18 hours covering approximately 60 square miles.  He was operating a 20-foot pontoon boat which had an accident around 11:30 p.m. Sunday night. The other man on the craft was able to swim to shore and contact police. 

 

6 ABC reports rescuers are not sure if the boat hit the jetty or the nearby buoys

New Jersey State Police tweeted they are speaking to Justin Belz of Marmora about the incident.

Witness Tom Murphy told CBS Philly he heard a thump and then saw a man swimming as he shouted Biddle's name. He and another man came outside and helped guide the man to shore.

Longport Mayor Nick Russo says speed may have contributed to the accident, which significantly damaged the boat according to a tweet by the Philadelphia Inquirer.

The Coast Guard brought in a 25-foot Response Boat and a helicopter to assist  Longport Police and Fire with the search for Biddle.

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