Story By: John Feng, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Asia Wire Report
Video Credit: AsiaWire
This is the moment coastguard officers find a lone man who paddled his 30-GBP blow-up boat out to sea before becoming stranded and at the mercy of the waves for over a day.
Mr Chen said he had purchased the inflatable kayak online for 300 RMB (33 GBP), and took it out to sea on 22nd October “on a whim” – even though he had never kayaked before.
He set off from a beach in the city of Ningbo, in East China’s Zhejiang Province, with no food or water, and no means of communication with land.
He said he had planned to paddle along the shore, but he was quickly carried out by strong waves into the East China Sea.
Mr floated 150 miles down China’s eastern coastline until he was spotted by a fishing vessel near the island of Dalu on the morning of 23rd October.
Coastal police from the city of Yuhuan, together with members of the coastguard, were sent to find Mr Chen, and footage taken from one of the rescue vessels shows the moment they encountered the lone kayaker floating helplessly on his partially deflated craft.
The authorities said Mr Chen had been at sea for some 25 hours at the time, and that he had “no control” over his rubber vessel.
The kayak had three inflatable sections, one of which had already been punctured and was deflated, while the remaining two appeared to be soft and leaking air, causing the craft to become unbalanced.
They tied his kayak to the coastguard vessel and then brought him aboard shortly after.
His kayak sank into the sea about 10 minutes later, rescuers said.
Mr Chen was weak and dehydrated, but luckily not in any life-threatening condition by the time he arrived back on land.
The authorities made contact with Mr Chen’s family later the same day to tell them he had been found.
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