4 fishermen on a float drift 12 hrs to safety

Sep 05, 2011, 06:36 IST | Shiva Devnath

After their boat capsized in choppy waters, four fishermen battled the high seas and held on to a fibre float and to sheer life

After their boat capsized in choppy waters, four fishermen battled  the high seas and held on to a fibre float and to sheer life

Four fishermen from a tiny village in Nallasopara are thanking the almighty and their lucky stars for being alive today.
The four Wilson, James, Prakash and Moses hung on to a float and a prayer when their fishing vessel capsized in the choppy waters.

The fishermen Moses and James (left), Wilson Velsa (above) and
Prakash (above right) from Nallasopara clung to the float for
dear life, and reached the shores of Palghar after 12 hours

According to Wilson Velsa (45), who was heading the fishing expedition, the group set off for the high seas three days ago.

The weather changed quickly and the rough sea made it impossible for Wilson to navigate the boat.

He called back home to inform his family that owing to the bad weather they would be returning to shore. However, the raging sea smashed their boat to pieces and hurled the four into the waters.

With nothing more than fibre floats to hold on to, the frightened four clung on for dear life. "We were very scared, but did not leave hope," said Wilson.

"There was absolutely nothing to hold on to. We scampered around and found the fibre floats and clung on," he recalls.

With no mode of communication to relay an SOS, the four waited in the waters hoping for a passing vessel to spot them.

"We lost our phones when the boat toppled, and we did not have any other communication devices to call for help. At first we waited in the water to see if any boats were nearby, but we did not find any," said Wilson.

However, when no sign of any help appeared for hours, the group decided to chance their luck.

The four then held hands and began swimming. "We did not have a compass to guide us. Neither did we have a sense of direction nor a clue of where land was. We just swam," Wilson said.

After swimming for more than 12 hours the group reached the outskirts of Usni Village in Palghar about 15 km from their village.

"We are thankful to God that even though we did not have compasses and did not know which way we were swimming we found land soon.
Or else we would have swam in the opposite direction and never found shore," said Moses.

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