SANTA CATALINA ISLAND (   —  The search for a missing diver who yelled for help before going under near Santa Catalina Island has been called off.

Authorities said the search was suspended just before 6:40 p.m.

The search, near Emerald Bay, was conducted by the Coast Guard over 587 nautical miles and for nearly 70 hours.

Adam Eggers of the U.S. Coast Guard said teams made 26 missions to find the diver’s body. The man first went missing Monday evening while on a chartered night dive.

By Tuesday, the rescue mission was being called a “recovery operation.”

Sheriff’s Department Capt. Doug Fetteroll said the Coast Guard was aided in the mission by sheriff’s deputies, the Los Angeles and Los Angeles County fire departments and Los Angeles Port Police.

“The Coast Guard doesn’t regulate recreational diving but is generally called in to assist during diving emergencies,” Coast Guard Capt Jennifer Williams said. “Diving is a sport that leaves little room for error, and we urge everyone who is in the water to make safety a top priority.”

Emerald Bay, one of Southern California’s top snorkeling and scuba diving spots, is on the west end of Santa Catalina, about 2 miles northwest of Isthmus Cove at Two Harbors.

The island is due west of Laguna Niguel, Dana Point and Mission Viejo.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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