Fishermen Float Out To Sea As Huge Ice Sheet Breaks Free

This is the spine-chilling moment nearly 100 fishermen are pulled out to sea on an ice floe after it snapped off and floated away from the eastern Russian coast.

Video footage of the drama shows some of the fishermen looking anxiously at the rapidly disappearing coast of Sakhalin Island as powerful currents drag them out to the Othotsk Sea.

A second clip shows a Russian Mil Mi-8 helicopter landing on the ice and loading up stranded anglers before flying them back to the mainland.

The emergency services said more than 70 people had been fishing on the ice when it broke away from the shore because of an early Spring thaw.

A huge ice floe with fishermen has broken off near the village of Starodubskoye. In the south of Sakhalin, Russia,Sunday, 18 Feb. 2024. Rescuers on airboats and snowmobiles will be dispatched to rescue the fishermen from the disaster. (CEN)

Local Ministry of Emergency Situations officials said they scrambled a fleet of small boats and a helicopter to rescue the anglers.

Some, though, had to wait almost a day to be saved as the boats ferried the fishermen to the coast in relays.

Sakhalin’s waters are said to be teeming with salmon which are caught by boring a hole into the sea ice. And dangling a line into the water.