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CARLSBAD, Calif. — The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for a missing boat owner after a 50-foot vessel caught fire and sank off the coast of Carlsbad.

Fire began engulfing the boat, named Relentless, beginning around 8 a.m. Thursday. Beachgoers spotted a plume of smoke over the ocean as the Coast Guard sent a helicopter and three cutters to a location seven miles from the coast.

Officials said the boat sank around 2:30 p.m. as lifeguards and first responders from Encinitas and Oceanside joined Coast Guard crews in scouring 600 square miles for the boat’s captain.

After a 21-hour search, the Coast Guard announced Friday at 11:30 a.m. that search efforts had been suspended.

“This morning I made the decision to suspend the active search for survivors, which is always an extremely difficult one to make,” Cmdr. Joseph Parker, Sector San Diego’s deputy commander, said. “The Coast Guard and our partners extend our deepest condolences to the victim’s family, who remain in our thoughts and prayers.”

Resources involved in the search included:

• Coast Guard Sector San Diego
• Coast Guard Cutter Munro
• Coast Guard Cutter Haddock
• Coast Guard Cutter Benjamin Bottoms
• Encinitas Lifeguards
• Oceanside Harbor Master
• Oceanside Police Harbor Unit

The Coast Guard said the case is suspended pending further information.