If ever there were an advertisement for the importance of a ditch bag and a decent life raft, this would be it.
Earlier this month, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter pulled two Bahamian fishermen from the water after they spent eight days clinging to the bottom of their overturned boat. The men had no food, no fresh water, no life jackets and no communications equipment when a freighter spotted them and contacted the Coast Guard, which then found the men about 30 miles off the coast of Florida between Boca Raton and West Palm Beach, according to multiple news reports.
“I swam over and you could see they were excited,” Coast Guard rescue swimmer Kyle Stallings told CBS News. “They definitely were on their last ray of hope. They were ready to get off that boat.”
Each of the men is in his mid-50s and was suffering from hypothermia and dehydration. They had been vomiting from ingesting salt water, and their skin was breaking down after having been immersed for so many days in about 6 inches of salt water that had collected on the bottom of the overturned boat.
The men were hospitalized and expected to recover. No information was provided about why their boat overturned.