Three Tanzanian fishermen who spent three days and two nights stranded at sea after their dugout canoe capsized following a heavy storm arrived safely in Mombasa on Tuesday night. Police say the three are from the Tanagani area in Pemba region and survived without food or water after their canoe sank.
“Their hopes to return to their families with a handsome catch were turned into a nightmare, as the three spent over 55-hours in the high seas playing hide and seek games with sharks and other deadly sea creatures to save their lives,” detectives said in a report on Tuesday.
The three men set sail at 4 AM on Saturday, in a non-motorized canoe. They were halfway through their journey when they encountered a storm accompanied by strong tides and strong waves that tossed them into the water.
“Miraculously, the trio fought through the storm and strong winds spawned by a surge of the northeast monsoon and managed to get hold of the vessel, which they floated on the water once again and hopped aboard,” police said.
“All this while, sharks crisscrossed daringly inches from the canoe as if marking time for the slightest provocation, before tearing the ill-fated vessel apart and devouring the terrified occupants in a single bite,” the report added.
On Monday evening, the captain of a bulk ship sighted a canoe containing three people who were stranded within Kenyan territorial waters. The captain reported to the Kenya Ports Authority control tower and was instructed to assist the three and disembark them in Mombasa. The ship’s crew rescued the trio and gave them food, water, clothing and a place to sleep before ferrying them up to the outer port limits of Mombasa on Tuesday night.
“The Tanzanian consular was immediately notified and after interviewing the three, he established that they were Tanzanian nationals,” police said, adding that plans are underway to ensure that they are repatriated back home.
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