4 fishermen set out on a boating trip off Florida’s Gulf Coast Saturday morning. They still haven’t returned

4 fishermen set out on a boating trip off Florida’s Gulf Coast Saturday morning. They still haven’t returned

A search is underway for four fishermen who did not return from a Saturday boating trip off Florida’s Gulf Coast, local authorities say.

Angel Hernandez Munoz, 38, Ruben Mora Sr., 54, Julio Cesar Cordero Briones, 37, and Vargas Parra, 35, set out from Venice, Florida, at approximately 8 a.m. Saturday morning, Venice Police Department said in a Sunday Facebook post.

The group was expected to return that night, according to a family member, police said.

The seas were not “too rough” when the group of experienced fishermen set out, but a heavy fog emerged that could have been “a factor” in their disappearance, Venice Police Department Capt. Andy Leisenring said at a Monday news conference.

Later Saturday, the weather worsened.

“Going into overnight and into Sunday, the wind’s picked up, the sea’s picked up and of course it’s been raining most of that time,” Leisenring said. “Even now, the conditions are roughly 4- to 6-foot seas, so it’s not very safe to be out there for a small vessel.”

About 13 local law enforcement boats have continued the search for the vessel today 10 miles off the coast between Longboat Pass and Captiva Island, Leisenring said. The US Coast Guard has been searching 80 miles out and has covered 4,600 square miles so far, he added.

“The search is still ongoing with @USCG and partner agency air and surface assets,” the Coast Guard District Seven said on X Monday.

The boat is a white, 1975 23-foot SportCraft, according to Leisenring.

The fishermen did not leave a float plan – which indicates the intended destination and timeframe of the trip – with their families, so it is unclear how far out the group went, the police captain said.

Police confirmed the vehicle and boat trailer were still parked at the Marina Park Boat Ramp, where the group set off. They urged anyone with knowledge about the missing boat to contact the Venice Police Department.