(SAIL-WORLD) — Tonga's 'sabbatical laws' against Sunday trading and a question about who will pay the fuel bill for the rescue have hampered the ongoing search for two sailors - one British/Australian and one Australian - whose yacht broke up last week on the Tongan Island of Late.
One motor launch owner, Ross Knutson, who has taken part in the search says he needs 1200 litres of fuel for the day to reach the uninhabited island and keep the search going, but was not allowed to refuel on Sunday owing to the strict laws.
Searchers still hold out a glimmer of hope that the men may have reached the rugged coastline of the uninhabited Late Island where their yacht 'Navillus' was reportedly 'shredded' after becoming grounded on Thursday night.
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'We think there was smoke seen definitely on the island during the last two days and that's possibly the only hope left,' Knutson, the skipper of the motor launch 'Escapade' that was searching the waters around Late Island on Saturday, told Matangi Tongaonline.