Lost at sea: man adrift on a buoy for days rescued by Urk fishermen

On Thursday morning, fishermen from the Dutch town of Urk rescued a man who was sitting on a buoy in the Channel — he had likely been there for days.

The man went to sea to go kayaking from England on October 15, when his kayak capsized. From then on, he climbed onto a buoy and fought like hell to survive. 🛟

“He said he scraped mussels from the buoy and also ate seaweed and crabs to stay alive”, skipper of fishing cutter Madeleine, Teunis de Boer, told RD.

view-of-dutch-town-urk-seafront-fishing-boats-and-houses-clear-skies
The magical fishing village of Urk, where the fishermen set sail for England. Image: Depositphotos

A young man’s survival story

The fishing boat sailed into the Channel between France and England at around 11 AM, when the crew suddenly saw a young man in swimming trunks, writes NU.nl.

“I was filling in my electronic logbook and looking for the buoy that marks the bank. I thought: you’re not serious”, Teunis told RD.

READ MORE | How the fate of 17 Dutch sailors changed history

In an effort to let the man know the fishermen saw him, the skipper honked the boat’s horn. “I was afraid he would float away if he jumped into the water. So I turned the cutter so that it would float towards us.”

The young man, who had been holding on to the tiny buoy for days on end, subsisting on mussels, seaweed, and crabs, was completely exhausted by the time they pulled him from the water.

A successful rescue

The fishing crew warmed him up and gave him some food and water. They immediately called the French coast guard, after which the man was taken to a hospital by helicopter.

READ MORE | Swimming hazards at beaches, lakes, and canals in the Netherlands

In parting words, the young man expressed his gratitude to the fishermen for rescuing him.

What do you think about this survival story? Tell us in the comments below! 👇

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Gaelle Salem
Gaelle Salem
Born and raised on the island of Sint Maarten, Gaelle moved to the Netherlands in 2018 to attend university. Still trying to survive the erratic Dutch wind and rain, she has taken up the hobby of buying a new umbrella every month. You can probably find her in the centre of The Hague appreciating the Dutch architecture with a coffee in one hand and a slice of appeltaart in the other.

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